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Ex-Arsenal player discloses Gunners’ transfer interest in Championship ace

Football League World logo Football League World 10/06/2021 Ben Wignall
a person in a blue shirt: Matheus pereiraoo00 © Provided by Football League World Matheus pereiraoo00

After losing out on Norwich City sensation Emiliano Buendia to Aston Villa, Arsenal are seemingly seeking an alternative attacking midfielder or winger to come into their side.

According to reports, Arsenal matched Villa’s deal for the mercurial Argentinian but because it was structured differently, the Canaries opted to accept the offer from Dean Smith’s side instead.

The Gunners have no European football to entice players with this season, and that could prove costly when trying to bring in world class talents – they’ve never had that issue before but Mikel Arteta and his team may have to lower their sights somewhat.

There’s still bargains to be had though and according to former Arsenal striker Kevin Campbell, the Gunners have their eye on a player who scored 11 Premier League goals from midfield last season.

That player is Matheus Pereira, who was part of the West Bromwich Albion team that were relegated to the Championship but the Brazilian was still impressive, with his performances giving off the impression that he belonged in a bigger team.

Following the drop into the second tier you cannot imagine the Baggies keeping him around and the likes of Brighton, Brentford and foreign clubs have been linked.

But in a surprise twist it could be Arsenal who win the race for the 25-year-old, and Campbell, who is also a former Baggie as well as starting his career at the red half of north London, believes that they’re a fan of the attacking midfielder.

“If West Brom can keep Pereira it would be a huge coup, and he will be a huge coup for whoever he signs, because we know he can be devastating, he has proven that already,” Campbell told Football Insider.

“He is a top player though and there will be more than just Aston Villa coveting him, especially given that West Brom went down. Teams are going to want to pick their bones.

“I do not think Pereira will be there even though Villa’s interest has likely ended now that they have signed Buendia. 

“I‘ve heard from my sources Arsenal want him as well, and of course they are in the market for a number 10. I just cannot see Pereira being there next season.”

The Verdict

Arsenal fans may turn their nose up at Pereira – but he could be exactly what they’re missing.

Pereira was just one of 19 players to hit more than 10 league goals last season and he can make things happen out of nothing, and considering some of the goals he managed to bag in a team like West Brom – imagine what he could do surrounded by better players.

Because of their lack of European football, Arsenal may not get Martin Odegaard back and they’ll need to be in the hunt for another attacking midfielder.

Even though some may think Pereira is better suited to a mid-table club, Arsenal cannot be too picky considering they only finished eighth last season, and Pereira may just surprise a few people should the Gunners really be interested in him.

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