Barcelona star is a shock target for Arsenal – but only if one of their own players leaves this summer.
Arsenal are amongst teams looking at signing FC Barcelona defender Dani Alves – but only if the Gunners’ current right back Bacary Sagna elects against signing a new deal at Emirates Stadium, reports Spanish source fichajes.net.
Sagna has had an indifferent first half of the season, but along with Wojciech Szczesny in goal was Arsenal’s best player against Sunderland at the weekend – and he was playing in the unfamiliar position of centre half.
His mixed form so far this campaign though has prompted plenty of calls for Carl Jenkinson to be granted an extended run in the side, with some critics believing that Sagna’s two leg breaks last season were an unfortunate factor in his less than stellar performances.
However, it is important to stress quite how much physical strength is required for the full back positions at Arsenal, as they each provide the majority of the side’s width.
Carl Jenkinson’s naivety was exposed against Sunderland, earning two yellow cards for reckless tackles, and the value of Sagna’s experience in that position should not be underestimated.
In this era of player power though, if Sagna decides to leave, Arsenal will be unlikely to be able to keep him – and Alves would be a fine choice as a replacement.
The Brazil star has won everything there is to win at club level, and has the physical attributes to gallop up and down the line.
At 29, he is the same age as Sagna, and would be a more than adequate mentor for Jenkinson until he reaches his potential.
Fichajes report that Anzhi Makhachkala are also interested in signing Alves.
Meanwhile, Arsenal have been regularly linked with the signing of David Villa, but are now thought to have moved on to younger targets such as Stevan Jovetic.