With the Premier League title now Manchester City’s to lose, Roberto Mancini is looking ahead to strengthening next year, with Arsenal striker Robin Van Persie his chief target.
Van Persie has only a year left to run on his Gunners contract, and whilst Arsene Wenger is desperate to keep him, the lure of £250,000 per week wages could be too great for the Dutchman to ignore.
In a season where he has truly come of age, 37 goals have proved the true world class talents of the PFA Players’ Player of the Year, who is now being coveted by a host of European giants.
City head the line of potential suitors, and appearing to have the title all but sewn up, look an attractive proposition for the Gunners skipper.
Each member of City’s front quartet have all been linked with moves away, as players such as Carlos Tevez and Edin Dzeko seem certain to leave Eastlands this summer, and pave the way for the likes of Van Persie.
Arsenal will put up a fight to keep their talisman though, hopeful of proving to the Dutchman that their ambitions are similar to those of City.
The pre-arranged signing of Lukas Podolski has gone some way to showing that, whilst mooted moves for Jan Vertonghen and Yann M’Vila could play a part in Van Persie’s decision also.
The fact that City are willing to make Van Persie their highest paid player meanwhile, shows just how highly Mancini rates him, bearing in mind the superstars he already has at his disposal.
Equally as adept as the focal point of an attack, or linking up with a main striker, the 28-year-old looks a perfect fit for City’s needs, should they be able to tempt Arsenal to do business.
Arsene Wenger would be mightily reluctant to do so, but could accept a substantial fee rather than risk losing the player for nothing come next year.