SIX signings to follow Mario Mandzukic to Arsenal

According to The Metro, Arsenal are planning a £15million bid for Bayern Munich striker Mario Mandzukic.

The Croatia international has played a significant role in the Bavarians’ back-to-back Bundesliga titles and their Champions League title last season, amassing 48 goals in 88 appearances for FCB.

But having fallen out with Pep Guardiola, perhaps inevitably considering Bayern have already wrapped up a deal for Robert Lewandowski – a striker nearly three years the 27 year-old’s junior – Mandzukic has made no secret of his plans to leave the Allianz Arena this summer.

Arsenal could certainly do with his added firepower, and the 6 foot 2 Croatian’s deep-lying forward style would also fit the Gunners’ lone striking role perfectly.

But as the North Londoners look to press on from claiming their first trophy in nine years last season, it’s unlikely Mandzukic will be Arsene Wenger’s final purchase of the summer.

With that in mind, here’s a list of SIX targets who could follow Mandzukic to the Emirates this summer, some inspired by his arrival, others more coincidental.

[ffc-gallery]CLICK ON THE BAYERN FRONTMAN TO REVEAL

Mario Mandzukic (Croatia):[/ffc-gallery]

XHERDAN SHAQIRI

Xherdan Shaqiri
Mario Mandzukic could soon find himself joined at the Emirates by Bayern Munich team-mate and often-mooted Premier League target Xherdan Shaqiri.

The 22 year-old has more commonly been linked with a Liverpool switch, but famed for his mixture of power and technique, he’d more than suit Arsenal’s style of play too – just take a look at his fancy footwork in this vid…

The attacking midfielder has proved a useful cameo performer for the German Champions following his move from FC Basel in 2011, finding six goals and two assists in 17 Bundesliga outings this season. He also netted this cool nut-meg finish for Switzerland in a World Cup warm-up friendly…

Furthermore, although Shaqiri is considered to be one of Europe’s top prodigies, a lack of game time with the Bavarians is stifling his progress.

A summer departure is widely expected, but speculation thus far suggests Liverpool are already close to an agreeement…

Mario Balotelli

Mario Balotelli
Mario Mandzukic isn’t the only front-man on Arsenal’s radar this summer, with the North London club also hotly linked to Mario Balotelli.

Just in case you’ve forgotten how disruptive an influence the former Manchester City badboy can be, here’s a video of the 50 Craziest things he’s done so far in his career…

But there’s no doubt the Italy international has the quality and firepower to address Arsenal’s desperate need for a dependable goal scorer.

The 23 year-old contributed a vital twelve goals to the Citizens’ first Premier League title in 2012, and since joining AC Milan in January 2013 has netted 30 times in 54 outings, not to mention this dream-crushing header for Italy against England last weekend…

Recent speculation suggests a deal could be imminent…

… and would most likely come at a cost of around £25million.

LOIC REMY

Loic Remy
Another striker known to have caught Arsene Wenger’s transfer attention is Newcastle loanee Loic Remy.

Since arriving in England in January 2013, the France international has claimed 20 goals in 40 Premier League appearances, including 14 goals for the Magpies this season and the below wonder-strike for parent club QPR at the end of last term…

Exceptionally quick, a lethal finisher and capable of playing out wide, the 28 year-old has a lot to offer the Gunners in the final third.

Furthermore, a return to west London appears unlikely, as admitted by Harry Redknapp…

It’s believed Remy comes with a £10million release clause and speculation suggests Arsenal are already hot on his heels – but Chelsea and Spurs have both also been linked.

IVAN PERISIC

Ivan Perisic
Continuing his impressive form at the World Cup could convince Arsenal to make a bid for Mario Mandzukic compatriot Ivan Perisic, who is reported to have been on the Gunners’ transfer radar in the past.

Arsenal fans might remember the attacking midfielder for this outrageous effort against the North Londoners during his Borussia Dortmund days…

The 25 year-old has just come to the end of a prolific season for Wolfsburg and has also been setting World Cup Group A alight, as shown below…

Perisic stats

It’s believed Die Wolfe could be willing to part with Perisic for around £10million, but recent speculation suggests Arsenal will have a wealth of suitors to contend with for his signature…

BRANISLAV IVANOVIC

ivanovic
Silly season is well and truly upon us, with The Metro speculating a surprise Arsenal bid for Chelsea’s Branislav Ivanovic.

An audacious rumour perhaps, but the Blues defender offers a wealth of Premier League experience – 177 top flight fixtures to be precise – and would certainly compensate for the losses of Bacary Sagna and Thomas Vermaelen, being capable of playing at centre-back or right-back.

The Serbia international has an impressive knack of getting on the scoresheet too. He netted this deciding strike during a 1-0 win at the Etihad earlier this season…

But the 30 year-old is better known for this type of physically assertive, consistent defending…

The Metro believe a £7million deal could be in the offing, but a firm favourite of Jose Mourinho, it remains unlikely Chelsea will be prepared to sell.

FABIAN SCHAR

Fabian Schar
Another centre-back known to have caught Arsene Wenger’s transfer attention is FC Basel’s Fabian Schar.

The 22 year-old has claimed back-to-back Swiss Super League titles since joining Bebbi in summer 2012, but it’s in the Champions League where he’s truly impressed.

He gained the highest rating of any centre-half in the competition this season according to Whoscored.com, and also boasted incredible defensive statistics as seen below…

schar cl

The Switzerland international, yet to feature at the World Cup, is pretty talented down the other end of the pitch too…

Schar is rated at around £9million by Tribal Football and was heavily linked to Arsenal back in February. But recent speculation suggests local rivals Tottenham could beat them to the 6 foot 2 centre-back…