Media reports over the weekend peg Chelsea as the keenest suitors to James Rodriguez’s signature, as the Colombian international struggles to adapt to Rafa Benitez’s tenure at Real Madrid.
While that would obviously be welcome news for Blues fans, who are enduring a tough campaign with their side languishing in 15th position in the Premier League, it could be a nightmare situation for Arsenal.
Los Blancos would obviously look to replace their World Cup Golden Ball-winning midfielder and some believe they would do so by trying to re-sign German playmaker Mesut Ozil from the Gunners.
Ozil was sold to the Emirates outfit by Madrid in the summer of 2013 for a whopping £42.5m and is only now, some two seasons later, showing his supreme talent on a regular basis.
The German is streets ahead of the rest of the top flight in the assists charts, having laid on 12 goals for teammates already this term, and is making more key passes per match than any other player.
That creativity is finally showing Gunners fans why Cristiano Ronaldo was so disappointed to see the former Werder Bremen lockpicker leave the Santiago Bernabeu, with Alexis Sanchez and Olivier Giroud now reaping the rewards from Ozil’s vision.
Of course, any initial panic that the 70-cap international will be yanked from north London via a hefty Real bid depends first on Rodriguez departing the scene.
Reports suggest the former Monaco man is at odds with new Los Blancos tactician Benitez, although injuries have also hampered his ability to settle into the Spaniard’s first-team plans thus far.
Gossip columns linking the Colombian with Stamford Bridge on Saturday had, if to be believed, Jose Mourinho’s men launching an audacious bid for Rodriguez this January.
Arsenal will certainly hope that isn’t the case, as Ozil has helped the side mount a genuine title challenge that puts the Gunners at 15/8 second favourites with Ladbrokes.
All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.
Fancy a flutter? Sign up today to claim up to £50 in free bets.