The media have heavily linked Arsenal to Timo Werner over the weekend, after a scout watched RB Leipzig play Napoli, but is that really where the club’s interest lies?
Over the last few days, publication after publication have linked Arsenal to the striker. Before Thursday’s match, however, there were almost no reports linking the two.
Looking back at where the news came from, it all seems to have stemmed from one throwaway line in a Calciomercato article.
After RB Leipzig won their Europa League match against Napoli 3-1, the Italian outlet wrote that an Arsenal scout was in attendance, with a special focus on Kalidou Koulibaly.
They then gave a mention to Werner, who scored a brace, saying “the London club also very much rates the striker Timo Werner, long on the radar of Atletico Madrid”. There was no suggestion that Arsenal were planning to make a bid, or even that they turned up to watch the German.
Other Italian reports confirmed that Koulibaly was the main focus.
After that, the English media seem to have taken the Werner story and run with it. Now, Arsenal are “ready to beat” Manchester United, Chelsea and Liverpool to a £50m deal.
It seems to me like they’re just following the transfer hype.
There’s good reason why this wasn’t much of a story before last week.
Arsenal have signed the two most expensive strikers in their history in the last two windows. Plus, Leipzig’s sporting director Ralf Rangnick said in December that Werner wouldn’t leave in January or the summer.
The Bundesliga club are already losing Naby Keita, so they aren’t likely to want to sell another star player.
Koulibaly is a more realistic target, and a player Arsenal actually need. I think that’s where the real story lies.