Just two weeks ago, Arsenal fans thought they will be signign Jamie Vardy after Arsenal triggered his release clause. But the player has chosen to remain at Leicester City. According to reports, Arsenal have identified Sporting Lisbon striker Islam Slimani as the player to strengthen their attacking option after England striker Jamie Vardy snubbed the Gunners offer.
The Leicester City striker decided against joining Arsenal and committed his future toPremier League champions Leicester City by signing a new deal. Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger is a keen admirer of Vardy after the striker played a key role in helping Leicester City win the title last season.
Arsenal went to the extent of triggering Vardy’s release clause, but an improved offer from the champions was sufficient for him to reject advances from the North London club.
Arsene Wenger has turned his attention towards Lisbon striker Slimani in order to strengthen his side’s strike force, according to Portuguese publication A Bola. The Sporting Lisbon striker had an impressive season with the Portugese club and was the league’s second leading scorer with 27 goals in the Primeira Liga.
Sporting Lisbon boss Jorge Jesus has backed the Algerian to score twice as more goals as Vardy in the Premier League, if he is well guided.
Jesus said, as quoted by the Mirror, “Vardy was this year’s revelation. People say that Slimani wouldn’t be able to play for Leicester but I disagree.”
“In England if he is guided by a manager who knows a lot about football, he can score double the goals Vardy does.”
The Portuguese publication claim Slimani’s future lies in England and could be heading to the Premier League in the summer transfer window. He is believed to have a £24.3m release clause in his contract and it should be seen whether Arsene Wenger will meet the player’s asking price.
Leicester was reportedly interested in the Algerian to replace Vardy, but with the England international signing a new deal, it now put Arsenal in pole position to land Slimani.
It was earlier suggested by Another Portuguese publication O Jogo (via The Sun), that Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger is ready to meet the Algerian’s full release clause in order to bring him to the Emirates.