Inter Milan’s Mauro Icardi will be on plenty of big European clubs’ radars this summer, especially those in the Premier League – Arsenal being one of them.
The recent FA Cup winners have been on the hunt for a top striker for years, with no success thus far, and the man born in the same place as Lionel Messi should be top of their transfer list this summer if they want to show real ambition.
But why Icardi? Here’s why Wenger must break the bank for the Argentine this summer…
Arsenal have reportedly given manager Arsene Wenger a £100m budget for the summer to improve the squad.
The north London outfit have been lacking a world class striker since Robin van Persie departed for Manchester United back in 2012 and whilst Alexis Sanchez can do a job, Wenger clearly prefers him on the wing.
Icardi would be the perfect finisher the Gunners have been lacking for many years and despite Inter Milan reportedly unwilling to sell for any less than £96m, that fee is not necessarily beyond Arsenal’s spending power.
It may need a world record fee to prise Icardi away from the San Siro, but Arsenal’s reluctance to spend big money on top talent over the last decade or so has arguably cost them a credible title challenge and that has to change fast if they’re to return to the Premier League’s summit.
Olivier Giroud is Arsenal’s recognised main striker; the France international played a part in 20 goals this season (16 goals, 4 assists). In comparison, Mauro Icardi was directly involved in 34 goals in total (26 goals, 8 assists) at Internazionale.
The difference in quality is clear and the numbers show that the 24-year-old would take the Gunners to the next level, providing they hold onto their best players. If so, they could be a huge force in the Premier League next season.
Mauro Icardi became Inter Milan’s captain at the age of 23, his leadership qualities were rewarded by Roberto Mancini by giving the forward the armband in 2015.
Arsenal have lacked leadership since Patrick Vieira left the club in 2005 and they have been unsuccessful in their pursuit of a replacement in this department ever since. Bringing a player in to this current squad that can help galvanise the squad during important times could be the difference between failure and silverware.
The addition of Icardi would undoubtedly transform Arsenal in to serious title contenders.
Inter Milan currently are predominantly a counter-attacking side and this has always been the case for Icardi at the San Siro. The striker is known for his magnificent conversion rate and clinical finishing in and around the 18-yard box.
Arsenal typically waste a lot of chances and the need for a goal scorer that doesn’t often give teams a second chance could make it a match made in heaven, at least on paper.
The possession based ‘total football’ Arsene Wenger strives means Icardi would have more opportunities in front of goal, which increases the chance of him hitting the back of the net.