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Arsenal back in for Brazil anchorman with swap deal mooted

| 26.08.2014

A year after reportedly missing out on Brazil’s Luiz Gustavo due to lack of assurances regarding playing time, Arsenal are thought to be back in for the Wolfsburg midfielder, with forward Lukas Podolski potentially heading in the opposite direction.

The pair were on opposite sides when Germany chewed up and spat out the hosts in their own backyard at this summer’s World Cup, although Podolski didn’t make it off the bench for his country’s 7-1 semi-final win.

At club level, the pair have enjoyed and endured markedly contrasting fortunes over the last two seasons.

Gustavo played a key role in Bayern Munich’s awesome 2012/13 treble under Jupp Heynckes before being sold to Wolfsburg last summer, although the Volkswagen-backed club missed out on a Champions League place by a point during the 27-year-old’s first term in Lower Saxony.

Podolski’s Gunners did manage to make the Premier League’s top four once more, although the Polish-born 29-year-old’s contribution was somewhat slight, starting just 14 fixtures and appearing 22 times in all.

Eight goals in those games have kept Europe’s elite interested though, with Juventus rumoured to be making enquiries with regard to the availability of a player who has struck 47 times in 116 matches for Die Mannschaft since making his international bow a decade ago.

However, Podolski’s wages – reported to be an eye-popping £100,000 per week – could see the Old Lady retreat into the shadows, while Wolfsburg have the money to fund such a deal for the former Koln and Bayern man.

With Arsene Wenger making no secret of his wish to land a holding-midfielder before the transfer window closes, Podolski plus cash to Wolfsburg for Gustavo sounds like a deal that would largely satisfy all parties.

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Alex Fortune