At one point it appeared that The Gunners had the simple task of just finalising this deal, however reports from Germany suggest that the German outfit offered around £3 million more for the Brazilian international then Arsene Wenger’s side - which was enough to sway the transfer pendulum in their direction.
If that wasn’t enough bad news in the transfer market from Germany today, more was to follow.
Arsenal have been heavily linked with an interest in SC Freiburg starlet Matthias Ginter this summer. The 19-year-old has been touted as a future star of the game, and with the versatility to play in both central defence and midfield, he is exactly the type of player the club needs.
He was even rewarded for his immense promise with a call-up to the senior German national side for their recent 3-3 draw with Paraguay.
With The Gunners missing out on Gustavo, renewing a deal for Ginter could certainly be a prosperous endeavour.
Of course, Freiburg pooh-poohed this idea recently. When news of a reported £6.1 million fee being agreed for the player was announced at the start of the month, the Bundesliga side came out to make it clear no such deal had been struck:
"There have been no offers for Matthias, and to suggest we have agreed a fee, as mentioned, is nonsense," said the club’s sporting director Joachim Saier. "The fact of the matter is, we have no thoughts about selling him.’’
But with the disappointment of Gustavo surely Arsenal would have now considered testing the resolve of Freiburg with a new bid, and also testing the ambition of this talented young man considered something of a ‘next Lothar Matthaus’.
But while clubs saying they are not interested in a sale is one stumbling block often manageable, when the player himself makes it clear that he will not be on his way, then it is time to give up.
That is exactly what has happened in the case of Arsenal and Ginter, with the teenager making it clear this week that he has no plans to leave Freiburg this summer, despite an overall desire to play for a big club:
"I will not lie: I certainly would like to someday play at a top club. This summer I will not change. It may even be that I stay on beyond the end of the season in Freiburg. "
Two hammer blows for Arsenal in the German transfer market in one fell swoop, and it is back to the drawing board, in a transfer window that is starting to appear ominously identical to the disappointing windows of the past few years.
How disappointed should Arsenal be with missing out on Gustavo and Ginter?
image: © tjuel