Bank to burst for Barca’s Busquets? Arsenal target Spanish midfielder


Arsenal, 9/2 with Coral to win the Premier League next term, have reportedly opened with a £24.4m bid for world class defensive midfielder and 21-time trophy winner Sergio Busquets in their attempt to prepare for an assault on the Premier League.

Following the signing of Alexis Sanchez from the Champions League club last summer, plus the capture of Mesut Ozil the year before from Real Madrid, Arsenal know they have serious pulling power. Noises in Spain indicate that the Gunners will return with a higher bid if their opening offer is rejected for the 27-year-old and they are ready to accept the World Cup winner’s wage demands, thought to be between £120k and £140k per week.

It has long been assumed that the Gunners need a midfield anchorman who is at the top of his game, though manager Arsene Wenger is particular. His preferred choice for the type of player to operate from his base, is someone who is skilled in the aesthetic subtleties of the game.

Someone who can anticipate the pattern of play and snuff out danger before it arrives, with an air of understated elegance and sophistication about their style. A languid nonchalance. Busquets fits the bill and he also combines these characteristics with those of an NFL quarterback.

His ball distribution will be useful to Wenger and while offering a perfect platform to start building attacks, he recognises runs from personnel ahead of him. Years of putting it on a plate for Lionel Messi gives him license to be confident in his ability to do this for the north London outfit.

Should Busquets arrive, he already has the perfect understudy in Francis Coquelin, who burst onto the scene last season with devastating effect. Literally a man-marking midfield menace, the wily Frenchman has a bright future at the Emirates and even makes an ideal foil for the Spain international, with his efficient industry.

It could potentially see Wenger tweak his system. Currently operating with a 4-2-3-1 setup, Wenger will be aware that Busquets has played the majority of his career in a lone role as a central anchor in a modified 4-3-3 formation.

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