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27 July 2017

Arsenal’s £45million move for Thomas Lemar is more a statement of intent than insurance for Alexis Sanchez

ARSENE WENGER’S pursuit of Thomas Lemar shouldn’t worry Arsenal fans – he’s NOT a replacement for Alexis Sanchez.

The Gunners have bid multiple times for the young Frenchman, a move seen by many supporters as an attempt to replace Sanchez before he is sold.

Arsenal are closing in on a stunning £45million deal for Monaco star Thomas Lemar
Arsenal are closing in on a stunning £45m deal for Monaco star Thomas Lemar
AFP – Getty
Arsenal's move for Thomas Lemar is NOT to replace Alexis Sanchez
Arsenal’s move for Thomas Lemar is NOT to replace Alexis Sanchez
Getty – Contributor

And fans can of course be forgiven for thinking that way, as in years gone by they have seen the North London outfit sell a number of their best players to both domestic rivals and abroad.

But in this instance, Arsenal’s £45million pursuit of France international Lemar is by no means an insurance policy for the sale of Sanchez.

It is more a statement of intent, with a hint of future planning.

Comparisons have been drawn between Chile’s record goalscorer and the Monaco star.

Both are quick, nimble, play on the left side and have the ability to dribble well with the ball.

But Arsenal are aiming to sign the 21-year-old from Guadeloupe for much more than his prowess on the left, as he is seen as a versatile option across the midfield, and a potential heir to Santi Cazorla’s throne in the centre.

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Alexis Sanchez has been linked with an Arsenal exit this summer
Alexis Sanchez has been linked with an Arsenal exit this summer
Rex Features
Arsene Wenger is confident Alexis Sanchez will stay put at Arsenal
Arsene Wenger is confident Alexis Sanchez will stay put at Arsenal
AP:Associated Press


It is, however, fair to say that there is an element of future planning with this move, as the Gunners go into the season with neither Mesut Ozil nor Sanchez tied into new deals.

The club has made it crystal clear that both will stay put for the upcoming season, and remain confident they WILL eventually sign new deals.

Thomas Lemar scored 14 goals and made as many assists for Monaco last term
Thomas Lemar scored 14 goals and made as many assists for Monaco last term
AFP or licensors
Thomas Lemar is a versatile player who could succeed Santi Cazorla in the Arsenal midfield
Thomas Lemar is versatile and could succeed Santi Cazorla in Arsenal’s midfield
AFP or licensors
All the information Arsenal fans need to know about target Thomas Lemar

But they also know there is a chance that one of the two may not put pen to paper, leaving them free to agree moves away from England in the new year.

So by moving for Lemar now, it enables Arsenal to capture the player at a price which will be significantly lower than what he will cost in 12 months, if indeed he continues on his current trajectory.

Lemar scored 14 goals and made as many assists in all competitions last term.

As for the move itself – there is a feeling that Arsenal missed an opportunity to get the deal done quickly back in June.

Chile star Alexis Sanchez has been given extra time to recover before returning to Arsenal for pre-season following his involvement in the Confederations Cup
Chile star Alexis Sanchez has been given extra time to recover before returning to Arsenal for pre-season following his involvement in the Confederations Cup
Getty – Contributor
Arsenal would do well to sign France international Thomas Lemar now before his stock rises in 12 months
Arsenal would do well to sign France international Thomas Lemar now before his stock rises in 12 months
Getty – Contributor

The player held talks and was keen to come, but Arsenal’s bid was not seen as enough for the talented winger.

Since then Monaco have sold a further two first-team players – Tiemoue Bakayoko and Benjamin Mendy – meaning the chances of Lemar moving from the French outfit have reduced.

However, Arsenal still remain confident that the player wants to come, and a deal will be done before the close of the window.

Tweet: @AFCAMDEN



Monaco star who is Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger's top target this summer… but is Thomas Lemar worth the money?


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