They did not take long to smash us at the Britannia and it has maybe boosted them to shove us away in the transfer market; Stoke City are reportedly lining up an early approach for 22-year old Arsenal target, Paul-Georges Ntep.
The Rennes man has been keenly followed by the Gunners for much of the past six months, with Arsenal scouts reportedely monitoring his proceedings in the Ligue 1 this season. A first team regular at the Stade Rennais, Ntep has steadily attracted interest from the Premier League’s big giants, including Manchester City but it is Stoke who are seen as leading the race for his signature this winter.
Mark Hughes pulled off one of the most surprising coups of the summer by landing former Barcelona star, Borjan Krkic, and wants to build on that by adding more stellar names to his side, as he perfects his plan of drifting Stoke fully from the Pulis system. Borjan was indeed crucial in their wounding of us this season and it would be quite another sting if they were to win Ntep from off our reach.
Ntep was a teammate of our very own Yaya Sanogo at Auxerre and has gone on to attract more attention to himself more than the Arsenal man. While Sanogo has just the one competitive goal to his name in his one year at Arsenal, Ntep has netted six times for Rennes this season, following up from the success of last season. Our Wenger-boy has yet to kick on really since his free move last summer despite the huge promise he arrived with and linking Ntep to him may not be the best way to market his value to gooners. However, Ntep has proven to be free of any injury history that has defined both Sanogo and Diaby, and could be a real snip for us if we managed to maneuver Stoke for him in January.
The player, however, may not seem so keen on a winter move.
Speaking to RMC, according to the Express, Ntep said:
“Is my priority to stay at Rennes this winter? Yes, I’m happy at Rennes. When these things happen during the season, that’s when things can go wrong with the group, unless the club needs money”
“But I don’t think that is the case at Rennes. I feel very good in this group and we want to stay in the top half of the table.”
“It would be very good to continue with Rennes.”
Would be? Perhaps there could be chance for a winter move afterall. And if the club needs money, Arsenal should be able to match every stroke from the Britannia.
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