Rumour: Arsene Wenger preparing £24 million move for Benfica striker Rodrigo
Arsene Wenger is ready to splash the cash on Benfica star Rodrigo, with the Frenchman preparing a £24 million for the forward, according to theDaily Star.
Wenger has just come off the back of a trophy-winning campaign for the first time in nine years and he is keen to bolster his striking department as his side look to continue their success.
Olivier Giroud has been leading the line for much of the season and Wenger believes it is time a striker is brought in to help take the pressure off the French international,which has led to links between Arsenal and Mario Balotelli, as well.
Arsenal were chasing the Benfica striker during the January transfer window, but the Portuguese side were unwilling to let the forward leave the club during the winter transfer window. Rodrigo is highly rated in Portugal and the 23-year-old has been impressive this season, having also attracted interest from the likes of Atletico Madrid and Zenit St Petersburg.
Rodrigo had a spell in England a few years back. At the age of 17-years-old, Rodrigo spent time on loan with Bolton Wanderers, a time he will not look back on too fondly. In 17 appearances, he managed just one goal at the Reebok Stadium but only four of those were starts.
The deal is potentially a tricky one as Valencia’s new owner. Peter Lim, owns an investment group who hold the player rights to the forward. This means the La Liga outfit concerned have first refusal on any deal for Rodrigo. However, if Arsenal do offer a substantial amount then Lim may reluctantly offload the striker.