Matuidi and Felipe Melo Arsenal Targets

July 5, 2009 | Filed Under: Blog 

arsene-wenger_transfers A report from the BBC says: Arsenal will have to offer full-back Emmanuel Eboue as part of any deal to sign Fiorentina midfielder Felipe Melo, according to the Italian club.

Brazilian Melo, 25, has signed a one-year contract extension with Fiorentina that includes a £21m release clause.

“Arsenal is the only club to have come close to the sum established by the release clause,” read a club statement.

“Fiorentina in turn proposed to Arsenal a reduction in the amount by including right-back Emmanuel Eboue.”

Fiorentina sporting director Pantaleo Corvino also denied reports in Italy that Melo had signed for Juventus.

Melo, who arrived at the Viola for £7m from Spanish side Almeria last summer, is a target for Gunners manager Arsene Wenger after the player had a starring role for his country in their Confederations Cup triumph this summer.

After partneringwith past Arsenal midfielder Gilberto Silva throughout the tournament it appears the north London club would like Melo to play alongside Spanish star Cesc Fabregas at the Emirates Stadium.

Melo, who is contracted to Fiorentina until 2013, has a tough-tackling style that resulted in him picking up 17 yellow and three red cards in Serie A last season.

Eboue had looked like a fine prospect when he broke on to the Arsenal scene in 2006 after arriving from Beveren in January 2005 but the Ivory Coast international’s career has faltered recently.

The 26-year-old conceded in June that he was unhappy about his lack of regular first-team action at Arsenal.

Also Matuidi was a Wenger target last summer, as admitted by the St.Etienne president Roland Romeye on Sky Sports this season.

“Wenger called me at the end of August to ask if Blaise was for sale. He didn’t as Blaise was not for sale,” said Romeyer.

“Next June we will have a meeting with Blaise and his agent about his future.”.Today is now “next June” and Matuidi has admitted that he ready to leave, in another article on Sky Sports, which read the midfielder Blaise Matuidi has declared that he wishes to leave the Ligue 1 club.

Matuidi’s impressive performances in France have led to reports that a number of sides are eyeing summer bids.Premier League team Arsenal have been credited with an interest while Bordeaux and Marseille are said to be admirers.

The 22-year-old is ready for the next chapter in his career and is hopeful St Etienne will allow him to find a new club for the 2009/10 season.

“My wish, if I have the chance, is to leave,” he told L’Equipe.

“If I have an opportunity, I will ask to leave. I have already said this in-house and the leaders understand my choice, but they also expressed their desire to keep me, which I find understandable.My wish is to leave because I think it’s time. Or, if it’s necessary and I stay, I would also be happy.”

What do Arsenal fans still think of this?

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