Arsenal and Tottenham free agent target could join struggling La Liga outfit

Cirpian Marica could reject North London duo for Rayo Vallecano.

Both Arsenal and Tottenham Hotspur could use some strengthening in their attacking department, but with the transfer window slamming shut instead they must be prepared to use the likes of Harry Kane and Nicklas Bendtner - good players, but hardly potent.

This is kind of how you could describe their solution to this problem Ciprian Marica. The Romanian international is a free agent after his contract at Schalke 04 expired at the end of the season. Obviously, as a free transfer either club could sign him right now.

Arsenal were first linked with him after these quotes emerged from his agent Ioan Becali in August:

"It is near Arsenal, we'll see this week. Marica is a very good striker, Romania's national player who has Western big football experience. It's normal to be in big clubs viewfinder, the more since remained free after he signed the contract with Schalke 04."

Marica, who has been training with his former team Dinamo Bucharest to stay in shape has been in the papers for the wrong reasons recently after slapping down a paparazzo who got a little too close for comfort.

Arsenal free agent striker target 'punches' paparazzo at his apartment

But he revealed before the weekend that he was very close to deciding where his future lay and that he could announce the decision by Friday. In the English press they had already made their minds up - Marica was going to snub Arsenal and join Tottenham.

But reports in Spain suggest that neither club will be signing him. Spanish media report that La Liga outfit Rayo Vallecano are ready to enter the race - and hope of bringing him to Madrid this week.

Now you are probably wondering what Rayo can offer that the North London duo cannot? Well it certainly isn’t money, the cash strapped side were expelled from the Europa League qualifying rounds this summer after failing UEFA’s Financial Fair Play regulations. Not to mention they have started the season poorly, sitting second from bottom of the table after five games.

But they can offer him first-team - something he would not get in North London.

But in all honesty it is nothing to get noses bent out of shape over if he does choose Spain over England. Marica scored just three goals in an injury prone season at Schalke last term - and is probably on par with what both North London clubs have on offer in reserve at the moment.

If Marica has decided to join Rayo Vallecano - good for him, because that is more his level than Premier League chasing Tottenham and Arsenal.

image: © juantiagues

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