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Napoli chairman Aurelio De Laurentiis has revealed Arsenal made an attempt to sign Gonzalo Higuain in the summer.
We were actively in search of a striker in the summer after losing Danny Welbeck to injury towards the end of last season. At the time, Olivier Giroud wasn’t available for selection due to France’s run to the Euro 2016 championship final, leaving us short in the centre forward department.
Wenger tried to sign a striker before the start of the season but was unsuccessful. There were many names we were linked with then but De Laurentiis has now revealed our interest in Higuain.
The Italian club chief claimed he refused to sell the Argentine to us because we didn’t offer enough money. The Italian club were insisting we meet the players €94m release clause but Wenger deemed it too expensive.
“I think we received some requests from Arsenal. Personally, I also received a request from Atletico Madrid,” he told Standard Sport .
“But they didn’t put enough money on the table. We were not ready to sell him – for me Higuain was not for sale.”
It is not surprising that we refused to meet Napoli’s demands for Higuain as Wenger was always saying during the window that he wouldn’t pay more than what he thinks a player is worth.
Fans have criticized the manager in recent years for his reluctance to spend big on players but I support the French man’s decision on this occasion.
Spending close to €100m on a 29 year old would have been a crazy thing to do. Higuain is a top striker but is not in the same class with the likes of Suarez and Neymar, so there is no way he would have been worth that amount. Pulling out of the race was the best decision and thankfully it was our club’s decision.3
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