Arsenal’s next transfer target looks to be in the mould of Bayern Munich’s Luiz Gustavo. The Brazilian had a superb season last year, winning no more than four trophies, but looks to be out of favour at the Allianz Arena.
The South American emerged in to the Bavarians side in the 2011/12 season playing a pivotal role in their charge to the Champions League final, only to lose out to Chelsea on penalties. The club then bought in Javi Martinez for Athletic Bilbao who pushed Gustavo down the pecking order.
New boss Pep Guardiola was quick to sign Thiago Alcantara from Barcelona which questions Gustavo’s place in the team even further and Arsene Wenger is ready to test the German treble winners with a £8 million offer.
The 25-year-old won the Bundesliga, Champions League and DFB-Pokal with Bayern before helping Brazil claim the Confederations Cup in a very successful 12 months for the midfielder but his time at Bayern Munich could be up.
Midfield is a very congested position at the German club with Martinez, Thiago, Bastian Schweinsteiger, Mario Gotze, Franck Ribery, Arjen Robben, Xherdan Shaqiri and Toni Kroos all vying for a place and indications suggest Guardiola will allow Gustavo to leave.
Wenger is on the look out for a defensive midfielder after not replacing Alex Song who left for Barcelona last summer. He has already seen a £19 million offer rejected by Bayer Leverkusen for Lars Bender and has refused to meet Marouane Fellaini’s £24 million release clause. Gustavo would offer a much cheaper option but still give the Gunners much added steel.
He knows what it takes to win following a string of trophies recently and could add that winning mentality to the Gunners dressing room. Wolfsburg and Corinthians are also monitoring the situation but Arsenal’s lure of Champions League football could see them win the race for his signature.