Arsenal have been cast a blow in their reported pursuit of Juventus midfielder Arturo Vidal as Real Madrid reportedly circle.
The Gunners were apparently hopeful of capturing the 28-year-old this summer, but now it seems Real Madrid have swooped in as firm favourites to gain his signature.
It has been widely reported that Vidal is available this summer, for the right price – as Juventus look to raise money to sign Chelsea’s Oscar.
According to Tim Vickery, a football journalist who specialises in South American news, Vidal is believed to favour a move to the Spanish giants.
And following a disappointing season for Rafa Benitez’s new side, Madrid are ready to ensure they don’t end a second successive season trophy-less.
During a discussion with TalkSport earlier in the week, Vickery stated that all the signs suggest Arsenal fans will be left disappointed;
The word in the Chilean press this morning is that the only thing that’s lacking from him joining Real Madrid is his signature on the paper.
Arsenal fans have been expecting a big name in this summers transfer window, and the feeling surrounding Gunners supporters is that Petr Cech is not enough.
However, there is very little that manager Arsene Wenger can do about the lure of Real Madrid, one of the best teams in Europe who will count on Vidal to get them back to being contenders in La Liga.
The ten-time Champions League winners could be set to lose out on Sergio Ramos as Manchester United inch closer to a deal for the centre back, and Benitez will be under firm pressure to reinforce an already leaky defence.
Vidal provides exactly that option, and the naturally aggressive Chilean international is nothing short of a world class purchase for any top European club.
Arsene Wenger has been questioned on a move for the midfielder before, who would fill the void of the lacklustre Mikel Arteta, and partner up with rising star Francis Coquelin in the defensive sector of midfield.
And despite having his national teammate, Alexis Sanchez, already at the Gunners there looks to be nothing else Wenger can deploy to attract the Juventus star.
His transfer fee is expected to be in the region of £28million, which is a justified price following his showings in the last year, competing in the World Cup, Champions League final and recently winning the Copa America.
Vidal will hold talks regarding his future once he returns from celebrations of his recent national triumph, but Arsenal fans should hold back on getting there hopes up.
If Arsenal miss out on Vidal, who should Wenger turn his attention to? Comment below!