Are Arteta and Edu on a transfer collision course at Arsenal?
Renewed speculation linking Arsenal with a move for Paris St Germain's Layvin Kurzawa may well indicate more than just the club's interest in a new left-back.
The Gunners were said to be very keen on bringing in the French defender during the January transfer window with David Ornstein, who has better connections than most in north London, suggesting the two parties were in ‘advanced talks’.
At the time, the rumours made sense with Arsenal having lost both their first-choice left-backs – Sead Kolasinac and Kieran Tierney – to injury.
However, the deal clearly didn’t sit well with head coach Mikel Arteta, the Spaniard eventually vetoing the move, despite technical director Edu’s insistence that he would make a strong addition.
Kurzawa certainly didn’t seem to fit the type of player Arteta wants to bring to the club having struggled to make an impact during his five years in Paris, chalking up 23 appearances this season.
Having burst onto the scene at Monaco, Kurzawa was quick to jump ship when the opportunity presented itself and doesn’t have the look of a player who can help Arsenal out, particularly in a position where they splashed out £25million on Tierney just last summer.
Arsenal did eventually make a couple of much-needed additions to their defence in January in the form of Pablo Mari and Cedric Soares, although with both men only joining on loan the club are likely to be looking to improve their options at the back once more when the next transfer window finally arrives.
Once again, Kurzawa appears to be a top option for Arsenal and they are reported to be at the head of a queue to sign the 27-year-old when his contract at Paris Saint-Germain expires.
Having already blocked the move once, will Arteta fight his corner again or let Edu bring in his man? Given how critical the next transfer window will be to reestablishing Arsenal as a top-four contender, it would seem vital everyone is reading from the same hymn sheet when it comes to recruitment.
That might not be easy when there are outside influences seemingly steering Arsenal’s transfer policy.
Way back in November, The Athletic revealed the strong link between Edu and super agent Kia Joorabchian and that connection has already resulted in David Luiz’s shock arrival from Chelsea last summer.
When Arsenal wanted Edu as their technical director, it was Kia Joorabchian that negotiated his contract.
When they needed a centre-half on deadline day, it was Joorabchian client Luiz who joined.
How was this relationship forged? And what comes next?https://t.co/9boXV1koJR
— gunnerblog (@gunnerblog) November 21, 2019
Joorabchian’s Sport Invest UK ltd firm also represents Kurzawa and Willian, with the latter having been strongly linked with a move to Arsenal as his contract at Chelsea continues to wind down.
With Joorabchian continuing to push his clients towards the Emirates Stadium, Arteta looks set to face a difficult battle to put together the squad he wants to during the next transfer.
While Edu is likely to have the best interests of Arsenal at heart, it is unlikely Joorabchian feels the same way and the super agent could become the latest roadblock in the club’s road to recovery.