fast little loans
Arsenal launched their tour of Asia with an unimpressive late 2-1 victory against a Malaysia XI on Tuesday as Arsene Wenger moved closer to clinching a deal for Santi Cazorla.
Wenger admires the Spanish winger and has swooped to take advantage of the financial uncertainty afflicting Qatari-backed Malaga.
The Gunners have agreed personal terms with the player and a fee of £16million with the club, who must settle outstanding debts before the end of the month or face relegation from La Liga. And Wenger is confident the 27-year-old will not be the final signing of the summer.
Despite claiming earlier this week that he wants to assess the fitness of Jack Wilshere and Abou Diaby before making a decision on his midfield, Wenger is still thought to be keen to sign £17m-rated Yann M’Vila from Rennes. He is also in pursuit of Caen’s 17-year-old striker M’Baye Niang, having had a £6m offer rejected.
Cazorla, who can operate on either flank, has been tipped as a potential replacement for Theo Walcott, who has less than a year to run on his contract. But Wenger is increasingly confident of persuading the winger to sign a new deal, despite interest from Chelsea and Liverpool.
“As a player you want to win titles, which we have not been doing but I believe we will soon,” said Walcott earlier this week in Malaysia.
A half-time substitute, Walcott played 35 minutes of Wednesday’s friendly in Kuala Lumpur before being replaced by Thomas Eisfeld.
“Theo is one of the players who has trained for only two days,” said Wenger. “I planned to give only 35 minutes to him or Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain and I felt Theo was suffering a bit more.”
Wenger played two entirely different outfield teams in each half, before sending on Eisfeld for Walcott with 10 minutes to go.
Arsenal were trailing 1-0 at the time but Eisfeld, 19, levelled in the 87th minute before Chuks Aneke, also 19, grabbed a winner two minutes later with the help of a deflection.
“It was a good work-out for us against a good team,” said Wenger. “The result was less important. We got the quality of game we wanted. We still have a lot of work to do. We are far from what we can produce.”
Arsenal flew to China last night and their next game is against Manchester City in Beijing on Friday.
Meanwhile, on the other side of the world, Thierry Henry revealed his intention to return to Arsenal once he calls time on his playing career.
He said: “Eventually I’d like to go back to Arsenal. I would go back to England, for sure, with Arsenal. Coaching does interest me but I really don’t think about it right now.” – Daily Mail