Wenger Coy Over Giroud
Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger is remaining tight-lipped over his club’s pursuit of Montpellier striker Olivier Giroud.
The Gunners are closing in on the France international with reports suggesting the deal will be tied up by the end of the week, but when asked about Giroud by French TV station TF1 last night Wenger refused to comment on the deal, although he failed to give the outright denial he often does when speaking about transfer matters.
“I won’t say anything to you,” he said.”Even under torture.”
Arsenal are preparing a deal which will see Giroud’s club Montpellier pick up £10million once various add-ons and bonuses are included, while reports from France claim that the 25-year-old will treble his wages when he moves to Arsenal with the Gunners are set to pay him around 60,000 euro (£50,000) a week. Montpellier have offered to increase Giroud’s salary to £32,000 a week but he looks set on moving to Arsenal.
Djourou Puts Aside Doubts
Arsenal defender Johan Djourou has denied that he is set to leave the Emirates. The Switzerland international has been linked with Serie A side Napoli after playing just 14 Premier League games last season but he took to his Twitter feed yesterday to deny rumours of his departure.
“I just want to deny what has been in the press about my transfer. It isn’t true at all,” he said.
“I have been at Arsenal for 10 years now and I am always committed.”
It sounds as though someone at the club has ‘had a word.’
Last month, Switzerland coach Ottmar Hitzfeld suggested that Djourou’s selection for the national team is in doubt without him regularly making the Arsenal first team and Djourou himself cast a shadow over his future despite signing a new contract with the club in February of this year.
“My situation at Arsenal is not easy,” he told 20min.ch in May. “I’ve never played so little, and especially not in my own position. If an interesting offer comes, I’ll look at it carefully.”
However, Djourou’s agent Flavio Ferraria fuelled the fire last weekend when he pretty much put the ‘for sale’ sign up over his client in an interview with Naples radio station CRC.
“Can Djourou join Napoli? It’s certainly possible, especially as we will be in Italy next week for a series of appointments,” Ferraria said.”At the moment Napoli are not on the list of appointments, but everything is possible. If he leaves the Premier League, then he will play in Italy or Spain.
“I saw my client the other day and he was enthusiastic about both Napoli and Italy in general. So far we have received an offer worth 10million euro, but it is up for negotiation.
“He wants to play for one of the top five Italian clubs.”
Napoli finished in fifth place in Serie A last season.
Bendtner In The Shop Window
Meanwhile, Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger will have been rubbing his hands at the sight of Nicklas Bendtner getting on the scoresheet. The Arsenal striker scored twice for Denmark as they lost 3-2 to Portugal in their second game of Euro 2012 on Wednesday.
Bendtner is one of a number of players Arsenal are looking to move on this summer after spending last season on loan at Sunderland where he scored eight goals. A number of clubs in Germany and Russia were keen on Bendtner last summer although none were prepared to pay the £12million Arsenal wanted and the club had to content themselves with a loan move.
However, Bendtner realises he is in the shop window and said before Euro 2012 began that he would decide his future once the tournament was over.
“Yes, I have talked to other clubs,” he said. “I have told all the clubs that I want to wait until after Euro 2012. We have got plenty of time to sort out the future.”