Arsenal are likely to miss out on their prime transfer targets as they are not expected to qualify for next season’s Champions League.
According to Jeremy Wilson of the Daily Telegraph, Arsenal are facing the prospect of losing out on their key transfer targets in the summer window due to the absence of Champions League football.
It is a dream for most players, particularly in Europe, to compete amongst Europe’s elite clubs for continental glory. A number of big-name players in relatively smaller clubs have switched boats particularly for the opportunity to play in the Champions League.
Competing in Europe’s elite club competition has never been a problem for Arsenal, particularly in the last 18 years or so, but now they face the prospect of missing out on the tournament in the 2017/18 season.
Their performances have been far from splendid in the Champions League as they have somehow managed to escape from their group, only to be humiliated by a Bayern Munich or a Barcelona side in the knockout stages.
Next season, that is not likely to happen as Arsenal will mostly be playing in the Europa League. This would undoubtedly affect their revenue as the Champions League helps generate a lot of funds.
It would also see them miss out on key transfer targets, particularly those who are already playing for Champions League sides, or those that have a boyhood dream of playing in the competition.
In his piece in the Telegraph, Wilson has spoken about Arsenal targeting Lyon’s Alexandre Lacazette, should Alexis Sanchez leave in the summer. The French striker has been linked with a move away from the club, but is unlikely to move to Arsenal now, as they can’t offer him Champions League football.
While it has been the same for Manchester United this season, the club are willing to pay heavy transfer fees and are also willing to match the exceedingly high salaries that the players demand these days.
Unfortunately for the Arsenal faithful, that is not how their club functions. Mesut Ozil, who has been handed a £250,000-per-week contract, is holding out for 12.5 percent more, but the club are reportedly unwilling to comply.
Arsenal are also looking at the possibility of signing Southampton’s Virgil van Dijk in the summer. Unfortunately for them, Chelsea and Manchester City are already in the race for his services, and can use Champions League football as a bargaining chip to lure him away.
The Gunners are also interested in Valencia left-back Jose Gaya as Kieran Gibbs and Nacho Monreal are not quite up to the level expected. However, Chelsea, City and Real Madrid are ahead in the pecking order to sign the player, should he leave Mestalla this summer.