Despite nearly constant speculation, at least two reported medicals, and several family members suggesting Gonzalo Higuain was on the brink of a move to Arsenal, the Argentine resolutely remains a Real Madrid player, and the latest news suggests the will be there for at least another week.
Real Madrid president Florentino Perez has said that they have received no bids from Higuain, and do not want to sell the striker, who is expected to discuss his future with Carlo Ancelotti next week.
Given the difficulties with the move, Arsenal might be tempted to look elsewhere for a new striker this summer, and one might have just become available.
Aston Villa’s Christian Benteke has handed in a transfer request, and whilst Villa are prepared to fight to keep the 22-year-old, he will be allowed to leave at the right price.
That could be around £25million, a steep figure for a player with just one year’s experience in a major European league, but it is worth remembering just how well Benteke did in his debut season in England.
The Belgian scored 19 league goals, 14 of which have come in 2013, which is two more than any other Premier League players has managed since the turn of the year. He scored 23 times in all competitions for Villa, ensuring his side stayed in the Premier League and helping them get to the semi-finals of the Carling Cup.
Clearly players can fade away after one good season, and have done so many time sin the past, but Benteke has the attributes to get even better next season, and Arsenal should consider switching their attention from Higuain to the Belgian.
The Argentine has more experience, especially considering the Champions League football he has played, but Benteke has proven his worth in the Premier League, and is stronger and faster than Higuain.
Either would be a good buy, and Higuain carries less risk, but if Arsenal decided to opt for Benteke, he could develop into one of the top strikers in Europe at the Emirates in the next few seasons.
image: © Jan S0L0