A laughable report in the Daily Star has suggested that Arsenal are prepared to let both Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain and Carl Jenkinson join Crystal Palace, in an attempt to drop the price of winger Wilfried Zaha.
The 24-year-old has enjoyed his best Premier League campaign in terms of goal contribution: six goals and eleven assists in 33 appearances have helped Sam Allardyce’s men avoid relegation this season.
Zaha is an ambitious player and having had a nightmare experience at Manchester United in 2013, will be eager to test himself among bigger surroundings once again in future.
Tottenham have been heavily linked with the forward’s signature, as manager Mauricio Pochettino is believed to be a long-term admirer of his ability.
However, Arsenal have emerged as surprise candidates for the Ivory Coast international. Valued at £30m, the Gunners are said to be willing to pay the fee upfront or use the aforementioned duo as an effective swap deal.
Why is this news story so ludicrous?
Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain on his own is worth far more than Zaha. A year younger and someone who has been at Arsenal since 2011, why would they be content in letting him leave so easily – especially after the impressive season he’s had? Having been one of Arsenal’s standout performers in an otherwise frustrating campaign, being part of a swap deal for another inconsistent winger is ridiculous.
That’s even before you factor in Carl Jenkinson, and how his proposed move to Crystal Palace broke down in January. Although he has since come out and clarified the situation, the 25-year-old featured under Sam Allardyce during his two-year loan spell at West Ham – but Arsenal have previously been keen to recoup a transfer fee, as opposed to completing a swap deal.
£30m for Zaha is undoubtedly an inflated transfer fee and given the lack of minutes that Lucas has earned this term, there’s no guarantee that the Palace man would receive much more next season if he were to join.