According to reports from The Telegraph, Arsenal’s latest injury crisis has seen Arsene Wenger revive his interest in Sporting Lisbon midfield enforcer William Carvalho.
The Portugal international is widely regarded as one of world football’s most exciting prospects, having claimed the Player of the Tournament award at last summer’s U21 European Championships – where he was watched by scouts from Arsenal, Liverpool, Manchester United and Spurs.
Reports in September alleged Liverpool and Chelsea could launch bids in January, with both clubs looking to beef up their midfield options. But the Gunners have seen offers for the 23-year-old rejected during the last two summer windows and according to The Telegraph are set to revive their interest amid a harrowing injury crisis.
The north London outfit could be without midfield partnership Santi Cazorla and Francis Coquelin until March – and Carvalho would certainly be able to replicate the latter’s physicality and defensive nous in Arsenal’s engine room. He measures in at 6 foot 2 and reportedly weighs in excess of 14 stone.
Carvalho’s contract includes a £35million release clause, but it’s believed Sporting could surrender him for around £10million less – amid news that plans to extend his contract beyond 2018 have recently hit a stumbling block.
High-end deals are always difficult to negotiate midseason, however, and The Telegraph claim Wenger could resultantly turn to the loan market instead.