Cut Price Deal For Inter’s Joao Mario Could Be Ideal For Arsenal

As it looks increasingly likely that Arsenal will lose both Alexis Sanchez and Mesut Ozil in either the next transfer window or on a free in the summer, then it’s fair to assume that the Gunners will be looking for new attack minded recruits.

With that in mind then maybe Arsene Wenger can take another look at Inter Milan’s creative talent Joao Mario.

The twenty-four year old has struggled for game time under new Inter boss Luciano Spalletti. It has been reported that the Italian giants are now looking to sell the player and could accept just £26m for the former Sporting Lisbon star, who cost them £38.4m back in August 2016.

We all know that Wenger likes a bargain and the French boss has been linked with Mario in the past, so a deal could be done.

The fact that Sanchez and Ozil are obviously looking to leave the Emirates makes a deal to bring in Joao Mario even more likely.

The Euro 2016 winner is a maestro with the ball at his feet. He enjoys charging at opposition defences with some pace and his excellent dribbling ability. He also possesses a great touch which helps his all round attacking style.

The Portuguese international has the awareness of what surrounds him, that means he can dodge challenges and find teammates with well judged passes.  Joao’s vision also allows him to release key passes at the right times.

He might only have three Serie A starts to his name this term but he’s already provided his side with three assists (the same as Ozil and more than Sanchez). Last term he averaged 1.8 key passes per game.

Another couple of standout features for the attacking midfielder are his physicality and his determination. He has the strength to shrug off challenges and he doesn’t seem to shirk away from them as Ozil has done at the Emirates.

The forward thinker also has an eye for a goal, although it’s not his most consistent attribute. He scored eleven league goals for Sporting in sixty-five appearances.

He might not be at the same level as an Ozil or a Sanchez but maybe that will come with time and with more game time.

He certainly has plenty of good attributes and Portuguese legend Deco certainly likes the look of him:

“Joao Mario, for me, is a player who could play for any club in the world; Barcelona, Real Madrid, Inter, Milan, Bayern”

Fans of the Gunners might be concerned by the player’s lack of game time at the San Siro but I would remind them of one Dennis Bergkamp!

The Dutch striker signed for Internazionale in 1993 to much acclaim. The former Ajax man was being touted as the next Marco van Basten but he struggled for two years in Italy and left as a flop.

Arsenal were the lucky club that signed Bergkamp and the Dutchman was simply sensational for the North London side and has gone down as one of the greatest ever to pull on a Gunners strip.

Now it might be too much to expect the exact same impact from Joao Mario but getting him at £26m could be a bargain for Wenger and his vision and passing ability good be devastating if he joins Arsenal and forms a great understanding with summer buy Alexandre Lacazette.

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