Schalke striker edges closer to Emirates Stadium switch.
Arsenal have opened formal talks to sign Klaas-Jan Huntelaar next month with the Holland striker set to enter the last six months of his contract at Schalke.
The forward, 29, is demanding about £100,000 a week in wages and a three-year contract to move to Arsenal, against whom he scored twice to help his side to finish top of group B in the Champions League this season. The German club are asking about £6 million for the striker, who scored 29 goals in 32 league games last season and has been watched by Tottenham Hotspur in the past.
SOURCE: The TImes (requires subscription)
Arsenal target Klaas-Jan Huntelaar is a striker who divides opinion.
There’s no doubt about the 29-year-old’s goal-scoring credentials. Huntelaar scored 29 goals in just 31 appearances for Schalke last term and boasts 34 strikes in just 59 caps for the Netherlands.
The poacher was also prolific in his native Holland with first AGOVV and Heerenveen, then Ajax.
But Huntelaar has struggled at the two major clubs for which he’s played, failing to make an impact at either Real Madrid or AC Milan and leaving both after just a season.
There’s a compelling argument that the striker thrives on being a big fish in a small pond and struggles with the pressure of playing for one of the continents top clubs.
Without a trophy in nearly eight years, there is certainly plenty of pressure on Arsenal’s players at present and it will be interesting to see if Huntelaar can replicate his goal-scoring exploits at the Emirates.
Even so, at £6m Huntelaar looks like a fine piece of business and Arsene Wenger is not a manager who spends money without first weighing up the risks.
However, the club are currently stalling over offering Theo Walcott the £100,000 a week the 23-year-old is demanding and it could lead to further a further dispute between the club and England international if Huntelaar arrives on the very salary that the former Southampton man is being denied.
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