It’s been a while since Arsenal have been linked with a centre-half, but one of the regular linkees has recently been linked with Arsenal again.
Could Juventus’ Daniele Rugani be joining Arsenal?
Sport Witness are reporting today via reports in Italy that Arsenal are looking to make a move for Juventus centre-half Daniele Rugani stating that (via Translate) Wenger wants to “sign him at all costs”.
Rugani was on loan at Empoli last season and was voted the Serie A defender of the season. But on returning to Juventus, Rugani has found himself down in the pecking order behind Barzagli, Bonucci and Chiellini and has played three minutes of first team football this season.
Arsenal have been long-linked with Rugani and it’s easy to see why. He’s very highly thought of in Italy, he’s played and excelled in a first team and at 21 years old, he’s got his best years in front of him. And with Mertesacker and Koscielny both over 30, and with no major prospect coming from the Under 21’s, Wenger will be looking to the future. Gabriel and Chambers will be the major options, but with Chambers being tipped for a potential midfield role in the future, Arsenal will be (again) light defensively.
Juventus though also have the same problem in an ageing defence. There is no place for Rugani as yet, but there definitely will be – meaning that unless they desperately need the funds, it would take an astronomical offer to pry the prospect away from Italy. Sources close to Rugani have apparently suggested that he would be open to a move to England. But with Juventus being very unlikely to want to sell, Arsenal not in immediate need for a centre half and with the money that’s likely to be involved, the only way I could see Rugani leaving at the moment is in a loan deal to a club that would offer him first team football.
And looking at Arsenal’s defensive options at the moment, that’s unlikely to be Arsenal in the near future. It’s a shame he’s not a midfielder!
Wenger could well be looking to the future and looking to get him before his price inevitably rises, but does ‘at any cost’ sound like something Wenger would ever say?