Report: Gunners eyeing Carvalho…again

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According to Portuguese publication Record, Arsenal have renewed their interest in Sporting Lisbon’s William Carvalho.

The Gunners had a bid for the defensive midfielder rejected in 2014 but are being tipped to match the 25-year-old’s €45 million buyout clause this summer.

The Portugal international is a mainstay in Sporting’s midfield having played 154 games over the last four seasons and was also an important member of his country’s successful EURO 2016 campaign. He’s under contract at the Estadio Jose Alvalade until 2020.

Back in October 2015, Carvalho fuelled speculation that he could join the Gunners by revealing a childhood love for Thierry Henry.

Speaking to A Bola, he said: “There is a club with which I’ve always been fond of, Arsenal. Because of Thierry Henry, a player with whom I have always enjoyed watching.

“Maybe this is why I look with so much affection to the Premier League.”

It’s suggested that Newcastle United are also keeping tabs on the player’s situation.

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114 Comments on "Report: Gunners eyeing Carvalho…again"

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love and hate

Arsenal and newcastle are interested…we can’t compete with them lot.time to move on

Mein Bergkampf

Can I please have a job as a sports journalist please? Contacts? Yeah I’ve got a few… *Leans in* Apparently Wesley Sneijder and Leighton Baines are on their way to Man United, Chelsea are after Cavani and Arsenal have agreed terms with a certain Sebastian Frey *Taps nose and leans cockily back in seat*.

IamaGoober

I genuinely think Le Coq is better than this guy. It says a lot that he’s been linked with bucket loads of clubs for the last 3 years and none of them have actually moved for him… so I don’t think he is really good enough in my opinion.

Besides, we don’t need another aggressive ball winner, we need a ball player in my opinion. We cannot go into another season with Santi being a maybe. We need to fill the void that he has left behind because we seriously miss a player that can start the plays much deeper in midfield. Obviosuly Xhaka is a great halfway house between the two styles of midfielder, combative and can spray a pass, and is good in deep positions. But we do need another option to him, because Ramsey isn’t that player.

Deeman

LOL hes not a ball winner .. hes more of a deep playmaker very compsed

PFo

He’s both. And he’s considerably better than Coquelin. But I doubt we’re actually in for him.

Anonymarse

He looks very much like another Xhaka. Not much like Coq at all. Too slow for one thing. Very good passer.

Wouldn’t be complaining if we got him but seems highly unlikely.

Anonymarse

as long as he is compsed that’s the main thing

He is better than Coquelin
He is better than Coquelin

I’ve watched him during Portugal’s games in Euro 2016 & Confederations Cup 2017, he is better than Coquelin – He is just overall a less clumsy & more polished version of Coquelin. He also can retain the ball much better than Coquelin when in a tight space.

Faisal Narrage

“It says a lot that he’s been linked with bucket loads of clubs for the last 3 years and none of them have actually moved for him”

Same could’ve been said for Lacazette this time last year. Yet here we are.

I can’t say I’ve much of him (and I doubt you have either) all I’ve heard is that he’s now used more in the B2B mould.

Personally I think we need a more athletic Vieira-type B2B player next to Xhaka (ala Petit-Vieira) who can perform both the energy role of Ramsey and dribbling of Santi (remember, you don’t need to be a diminutive CM to be a dribbler, Vieira was a great dribbler of the ball).

And this is coming fron a guy who for years rejected the calls for the “we need a replacement for Vieira” groups. But now, I do agree.

IamaGoober

Athletico were in for Lacazette though.. the only reason he’s ended up an Arsenal player is due to their transfer ban. We weren’t his first choice move so I don’t entirely agree with your comparison.

I disagree with @PFo I don’t think he’s better than Francis for me. Also I disgaree with @Deeman he plays as a defensive midfielder for Sporting.. not as a CM.

Faisal Narrage

I did say “this time last year”. Atletico only tried to get him this year. Last year, no top team realistically tried to get Laca, at the age of 25, after about 4 years of playing in France.

My point is that simply saying “oh nobody wanted him, he must be shit” without actually seeing the player isn’t really much of an argument.

PFo

Correct

IamaGoober

Yeah – but the difference being Lacazette has moved this year, whereas Carvalho is still at Lisbon.

And I get that you’re paraphrasing but I didn’t say that really. I am not saying that he is an awful player, my point solely was we already have Francis who to me, is (just about) the better player, and for the money we would pay for Carvalho I don’t think he is worth it.

An Ox-sized Coq

Did you just call Xhaka a “halfway house”?

Ted E.

I’d like to see a partnership of Granit Halfway House Xhaka and Aaron bordello Ramsey.

Manganese bronze

halfway brick shithouse!

Crash Fistfight

I wonder if this is getting lost in translation?

Chairman Flamini

For anyone wondering. A brick shithouse is Australian slang for a tough unit. Doesn’t imply he’s shit. “Built like a brick shithouse” is the full saying.

IamaGoober

Yeah as in he’s got the big physicality to his game, and the ability to zing a pass.

Kwame Ampadu Down

We need someone with pace who can win the ball, but carry it too, to partner Xhaka. Another Kante if you will. There’s no point talking about a replacement for Santi if Xhaka is the future of our midfield. (Which I think he is)
You need someone who can partner him & allow him to play to his strengths.

Faisal Narrage

Renato Sanchez fits that description.

mpls

We need a new Diaby

Johar

Without the injury problems of course.

Mpls

Goes without saying

Hayatu

Poo meter? I need to take a poop blogs.

GooonerMike

A bit too slow for me….it would have made sense to get him as an Alex Song replacement at the time…at this moment, any of Goretzka or Golovin will do for me…

Tim

Golovin? Over Carvalho? No way.

Golovin looks average in one of the worst leagues in Europe. Carvalho is a powerful CM – exactly what we need. Another physically weak, ball playing CM is exactly what we don’t need.

Faisal Narrage

Golovin? Isn’t he that Russian player of which Arsenal’s Russian scout said he wasn’t good enough for Arsenal?

That’s the guy you want?

GooonerMike

Arsenal’s Russian scout said he wasn’t ready for Arsenal (or the EPL), not that he wasn’t good enough for Arsenal.

Faisal Narrage

Err, if he’s not ready it means he’s not good enough. He may become good enough, but he currently isn’t.

But the scout said much more, and generally didn’t seem impressed at all.

midgunner

I agree, looks pondersome. Sometimes Xhaka has struggled with the pace of game as well but I’m hoping that’s just first season adjustment.

But I’d like someone agressive and quick.

cazorla\'s smile

Golovin… FFS!! really??

The Director

Is he good enough? I have seen him play for Portugal during the Euros, and was not really impressed by his performances. Sure he is strong and can tackle, but he is quite slow and offer little offensively. I don’t think he is an upgrade on our current midfield options. 45 million seems quite steep in that case…

Crash Fistfight

If our current defensive midfield options are Coquelin and Elneny I think he’s quite a bit of an upgrade. If you think Xhaka is a DM you’ve obviously been watching someone else all of last season and the Euros last year.

Tristan

Yeah I mean, it’s not like they won it or anything….

bendtnerschristmastree
bendtnerschristmastree

No thank you. we need a creative midfielder, not a slightly taller Coquelin.

PFo

He’s way better on the ball than Coquelin. And considerably bigger and stronger. He’s like Wanyama with better ball skills. Biggest question mark is pace, I think. And the fact that no big clubs have been in for him yet is a bit of a red flag, but that’s circumstantial evidence at best.

gunnerpete

but is he like Wanyama without the red cards?

Andy Mack

Wanyama doesn’t get red cards anymore.
All he did was move from Southampton to a PGMO supported team and the cards stopped!…

bendtnerschristmastree
bendtnerschristmastree

either way, not the type of player we need in midfield.

PFo

And who do we need in midfield? Naby Keita? I agree, but it’ll cost us 80m+ and Liverpool are in front of us in the queue and they can offer CL football. Goretzka? Guarantee he’s going to Bayern in a year. Xhaka is great but too slow to cover us defensively on his own in midfield. So we need someone who (a) is mobile, (b) is a good tackler, (c) is physically robust enough to compete in the PL, and ideally (d) can dribble out of tight spaces to help us beat a high press, if not as well as Cazorla, at least much better than Xhaka, Ramsey, Coq, or Elneny can.

Now, how many players in world football do you know of who fit all those criteria and are realistically available? Keita’s probably the one who comes closest, and he’s not coming. I like the look of Nice’s Jean Seri, but his low tackling and interception stats make me doubtful that he could form a partnership with Xhaka that wouldn’t be too soft defensively. Plus, what happens when Xhaka gets injured?? Coquelin is a good ball-winner, but partnering him with Ramsey is a disaster waiting to happen (as we’ve seen plenty of times in the past). So we either have to buy more than one new midfielder (highly unlikely) or we need to compromise.

Carvalho looks a good compromise to me. He could cover for Xhaka, and partnering him with the Swiss and having them both sit deep would give us the kind of defensive cover that the back three is currently offering, which means we would have the option of reverting to a back four and still playing two attacking fullbacks. He’s a physical beast, he’s very assured on the ball, and folks who are referencing his Euro 2016 performances as evidence that he’s immobile or doesn’t contribute offensively fail to take into account the fact that their manager was playing a very cautious, counter-attacking game and clearly instructing Carvalho to just sit in front of the back four and mop up. I thought he did that job really well (they were very solid defensively even if their attack was pretty average), but you only have to look at, e.g., his performances at the u-23 world cup (or was it euros?) a few years back to see he can charge forward with the ball from midfield a la Vieira or Yaya Toure. I’m not saying he’s perfect, just that we could do a lot worse.

Art Van delay

Nice one.

Arsensarmy

By far the best and most well stated comments on carvalho. I rate him highly. I would love keita but that’s a dream way off in the distance. Carvalho has a much better skill set than coquelin and I think would pair well with xhaka.

Don

I’d be very dubious of this. Had we wanted him we’d of signed him previously. I’ll put this down to an agent trying to spark interest as I don’t believe he is of the requisite quality to improve our midfield.
That said I find the lack of links to a centre midfielder quite troubling as this is one area in which we are in desperate need of improvement and refreshing.

No way

It’s because we amany already. Xhaka, Ramsey, coq, elneny, santi and jack. Plus the ox wants to

No way

Play there as well. So that’s 7 players for 2 positions. We’d have to sell to buy.

Lord Bendnter

Carvalho, Draxler, Higuain, who else?

Albioff

Salomon Kalou

Kai

Benzema

Cagooner

M’vila.

Faisal Narrage

Obafemi Martins?
Sebastian Frey?

kinghenrythe14th

I say we snap up Christopher Samba

David C

haha, you beat me to it 🙂

North Bank Gooner

He is tall.

Original Paul

GoonerMike

mpls

Yaya

GunnerMc

Can we just bin off:
Elneny, Ospina, Debuchy, Jenkinson, Campbell, Wilshere, Perez, Gibbs and get in reliable squad players/competitors for starting spots.

Butland, Carvalho and Mahrez/Lemar wouldn’t be too shabby a start

Theo the friendly ghost
Theo the friendly ghost

Perez is class and hasn’t got a look in for some reason, Ospina is probably the best backup keeper in the league and what has Elneney done so wrong!

PFo

Ospina is a nice bloke but very very average.

Byo

Sporting have been trying to flog this guy for a while. It fits in with their business model.
I’m not convinced Arsenal need him. Slow and uncreative.
So many alternatives that will bring something new, and possibly be a long term replacement for Carzola(the magician)- Fornals, Goretzka, Golovin.

PFo

Has anyone actually seen this Golovin chap play? I’m more skeptical about him than Carvalho. Goretzka I’ll give you, but it ain’t happening, as he’s going to Bayern for free next year.

PFo

A Cazorla replacement would be lovely, but there aren’t many of those at Santi’s level out there and it would also be nice to have another deep lying player who can both partner and stand in for Xhaka.

Go For It

Possibly, just possibly, Lemar could provide some of the creative magic that the little Spanish magician gave us.

When I first saw Lemar play left midfield for Monaco I thought “his playing style and skill remind me a bit of Cazorla”. Anybody else see a bit of similarity there? If Lemar is really on a trajectory to reach close to Santi’s level of skill/passing, then he’s probably worth the huge amount of cash necessary to get him in today’s market.

(Btw, how I miss watching Santi “Twinkle Toes” Cazorla play!)

cygan\'sbaldspot

It’s CAZorla. CAZ. Not ‘Carz’ . Please get it right in the future, thanks.

Stikkman

Lol. Carvalho and Benzema. I’m sure we’ll be linked with them till 2050.

rugrat

any word on sebastien frey?

Make Arsenal Great Again
Make Arsenal Great Again

M’Villa will also be on our list until 2050

Wezza

Aren’t we in for Kalou as well?

vino

He’s really picked up the reigns from Yann M’Vila this guy. They get linked every window, and before you know it they’re 25 and the shine has completely worn off.

Doubt most of us have watched enough of him to know if he’s a player or not- but 25 years old and still at Sporting says something maybe. Not sure, but would not at all be disappointed if we turned around and signed him to be fair. We need recruits in this area and the links to central players are few and far at the mo. Actually we don’t seem to have had any strong links aside from Lemar for quite some time now.

Faisal Narrage

For every M’Vila who’s shine faded, there is a Kompany, Lloris or even Vertongen, players we were linked with for years, but never acted upon.

Then fans will be like “why didn’t we sign them when we had the chance?”

Faisal Narrage

Also we need to remember that we do have a habit of buying players we were once linked with.
Laca
Rosicky
Per
Arteta

Just a few players we were linked with before we ended up securing a fair bit after the hype settled.

PFo

Great point.

I remember a few years ago Christian Eriksen was the next “big thing” while still a teenager (can’t remember if we were really linked with him per se, just that everyone was), and then, for whatever reason, no big club really went in for him, he stayed a few more years at Ajax, and when he left he went for a relatively modest fee to a pretty sh*t mid-table club. Now he’s one of the best attacking players in the PL.

For every young, hyped player with potential who never lives up to it, there’s another that does but just takes a while to get there.

Bertie Big Bollocks

We are linked to this guy every season and it’s always the Portuguese press. I suspect his agent is trying to drum up interest. Crikey though, imagine a midfield of him and Xhaka.. so immobile haha

Drew

10 on the Poo-Meter

renaissancerosicky

Can anyone tell us how reliable this publication is? ‘Record’? Wondering whether to give this rumour the time of day.

Davey

I heard we’re in for Sebastien Frey.

Heisenberg

William Carvalho is the new Yoann Gourcuff!

Gooner49

We need a Santi clone, someone who can read the game and support front men. Carvalho a poor substitute for even a half fit Santi. Don’t waste the cash.

Herphiez

Something is different this time,it used to be A Bola or O’jogo reporting the speculations.

PFo

Is that a joke? Not knowing anything about the Portuguese press, I have no idea if Record is more/less legit than those others.

Bonkers

This move would make no sense. Unless we were getting rid of a DM or making our midfield 100% focused on defense to free up attackers. I dont know. Poo out the roof

Stayn

Third party ownership. Not happening

poirobi

Speaking of Dms, can we just sign Yann M’Vila already?

Alexstratz

Carvalho to Arsenal, the meme that won’t die.

David Hillier\'s luggage
David Hillier\'s luggage

I hear we’re in for Sébastien Frey too

Santi\'s left nut

. Coq is so erratic Ramsey is…well Ramsey. This guy will hold it down back there, an old fashion shield in from of the back 3.

Goonie

It’s interesting to note how many players between ages of maybe 20 and 30 speak about how it is their dream to one day play for a certain club because they watched them growing up or because of watching certain players which they idolise. There’s a kid somewhere in the world watching this Arsenal team play, maybe he/she watched us win the FA cup and dreams about playing for Arsenal. Think about the advantage clubs that win championships regularly have. Maybe that kid also happens to be a big talent and may one day win us a championship when they play for us when in 15 years time

ClockEndRider

She? I know we live in a post truth world but a woman turning out for a premier league club is no more likely than a woman playing on the next Lions tour. Equality of opportunity is where we should be aiming. But pretending that the sexes are equal in terms of sheer physical strength is just silly.

The_Blerch

What if there’s a young girl out there who saw Giroud’s scorpion kick or any of Ozil’s sublime touches last year, was inspired and played for arsenal ladies?

Unoriginal Paul

You know who’d be great is that Tom Davies at Everton. Love his aggression, range and hair.

GooonerMike

Definitely the hair…

Paul

How many Paul’s are on here? lol

Thaatarsenalguy

It shouldn’t be this way , but he fact that Newcastle are the only other prem team interested , lowers his value in my eyes .
I hope it’s just another case of wenger seeing what others can’t

nimble foot

Newcastle is managed by Benitez the fat one. I don’t like him but he is a fairly good manager who has played with good players. He definitely knows one with potential to play in the prem

Gus Caesar

This is about as likely as us signing Sebastian Frey.

Kai

Coquelin needs to improve on his assists & creating chances as well or he’ll be behind xhaka

GlenBo

Hes another Xhaka but slower, not what we need

santori

Anything better than Elneny as far as DM is concern.

But I think the current system we have, Granit acts more like a quarterback (to borrow from American sport).

Coquelin is a more straight forward defensive shield.

What we are struggling is to find back up or alternate for either because both utilise different attributes.

Coquelin is improving but not entirely water tight either at the moment.

Elneny working deeper in the CBack role in pre-season in fact seem reasonable with his distribution. BUT its his defensive side that to me is suspect still. He looks flimsy.

I think on the other side of the equation, Ramsey clearly links forward.

To me (rather than Ox whom I feel does his best work wide and right), Iwobi can replicate some of what Ramsey gives running in from deep. The lad has a bit of strength about himand his close control work is excellent.

Carvalho to me is like MVilla or Melo. Media prescribed solution to all our woes. Those two have gone no where clearly exposing the media for nonsense just like their trumpeting of Stones as a “good capture’.

I think Carvalho is limited in role. OK to have if we are strictly covering the traditional DM side of things.

BUT what we really need is a hybrid between the two roles I mentioned Coquelin and Granit provide seperately plus some.

What Elneny does not give you is the extra (albeit I have to say his long range shooting isn’t to be sniffed at)

IMO we lack the ability to carry the ball forward through feet. Maybe Iwobi (and Ramsey) can perform some of this but the Santi role of ball retention has also not been replicated with granit only covering for long range passes.

Tricky one in midfield because it depends on who is available in market.

But clearly we are still lacking capability to revert to 4-2-3-1 if need be which could be beneficial.

Assistantref

Hard to see this one. He can’t possibly play with xhaka, and are we really going to sign a dm who doesn’t fit with our first choice cm? And I don’t think he’d bench xhaka either. So 40 million on a sub? Unlikely.

PFo

why can’t he play with Xhaka?

Assistantref

Too slow, too immobile.

Chris Norton

Ah, that last line is beautiful in its subtle contempt. Chapeau.

Leon

Very one dimensional player and far too similar to Coquelin to be any good for Arsenal.
Leon Goretzka would be a much better bet but I cannot see Arsenal getting him.
Very disappointing summer transfer window thus far. I cannot see us finishing higher than 6th..

Uwot?

Why would we want a “big willy”when we already have a coq?not to mention we after “van dick” as well.bit of a theme going on here….

Johar

There clearly is in your mind anyway.

Laughing Stock

If this is dick laws last year he should try to pull off the “Arsenal Tabloid Treble” and sign Carvalho, Sebastien Frey and Solomon Kalou all in the same window!!

Matt

We need some creative player in central midfield as Ramsey + Xhaka have shown they can’t perform the Cazorla role. We have Xhaka and Coquelin already as a “destructive” option in midfield

Byo

Yes, I have watched plenty of Goretzka and Fornals(echoes of a fit Diaby), who today paid his recession clause and left Malaga. Golovin, I have only seen once. The guy is smooth, unfussy and quick.

And anyone saying we cannot finish higher than 6th before the start of season……I remember all the “experts” at the start of last season proclaimed Man City the winner too!

John Lukic

Pure guff from his agent or column inches to fill in the papers.

bfollinprm

The most common fan punditry is that we need someone with energy and pace in midfield to partner with Xhaka, who has the ability to carry the ball, is hard to run past, and takes care of possession.

Has it occurred to anyone else that that player already exists in the first team, in the form of either Nacho or Saed? And that we’re really just describing any capable wingback? Of which the team has two (Ox and Maitland-Niles) for whom both boss and player constantly mark for playing time in central midfield. Yet they don’t get that game-time.

I think if anything the problem isn’t that we don’t have central options, it’s that we don’t provide enough support. You need more than 2 players in the midfield in the modern game. It helps in the 3-at-the-back that the central defenders have license to step up, but in the old 4-2-1-3/ 4-2-3-1 Ozil ended up too close to the top of the pitch to effectively support in transition and the back line is held by the opposition forwards, which just left too much space. It’s a symptom of the system, not the players.

bfollinprm

As a corollary, I think the boss might be thinking of our squad in terms of a hybrid 3-4-3/4-2-3-1 system, where in the transition Nacho steps up to midfield, Ozil moves center, and Ramsey moves wide right.

Con

Goretzka should be our number one target.

GreenCannons

I’m Arsenal born and bred, but also a Sporting CP fan (my parents are from Lisbon) and i’ve watched this guy ever since he broke into the first team at Sporting at the age of 19. He is special. Has a great first touch, can tackle effortlessly and his distribution is Xhaka-esque. NEVER out of position and covers ground so well it would make Viera blush. If he was Spanish, French or German every man and his dog would be raving about him. Bayern signed Sanches based on hype, but Caravalho is the real deal. And i know from contacts close to the club, that Boa Morte has scouted him (for us) for 6 years and considers him to be elite. For 45mil Euros, we’ll be signing a £60-70mil market rate player. Let’s hope the interest is genuine and Wenger grabs another bargain!

Thomas Thiep Mayuen

These speculations are giving some die-hard gooners like myself a heart disease… Carvalho since 2014 and nothing happened. Let wait and see this time. However, the Prof. must know that we are the underdog amongst top six (6) as of today given how solid Chelsea at the recent friendly match.

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