Reports suggest that once again Arsene Wenger has turned to his homeland to solve his defensive problems. Only this time, the player is not a young unknown but a recognised world-class star and he will have to battle it out with Roberto Mancini for the services of Roma defender Phillipe Mexes. And of course, Harry Redknapp has expressed his interest too, just for good measure.
Wenger’s penchant for a French defender has this time taken him as far as Champions League stalwart Mexes, who has before expressed his interest in joining Arsenal. The question is, will he leave Serie A to take up the new challenge of the Premiership?
Or, will Roberto Mancini snatch Mexes from under Wenger’s nose? If it comes to a battle of money, then surely Man City will win? If it comes to who Mexes wants to play for then its anybody’s guess. Mancini knows the Italian league and could possibly use this to his advantage in persuading the £10 million-rated defender to Eastlands. For Mexes, what is the best move? Will he get to grips with the pace of the Premiership easier at one club? Are the two clubs both capable of vying for the same calibre of players now, as legitimate title contenders? Or are both clutching at straws to think that Mexes is the final piece in their respective defensive jigsaws and that they can realistically chase Chelsea and Man Utd? Is a Champions League place more an achievable aim?
Mexes is a player of class, who has previously been linked with both Man Utd and Chelsea over the years. A defensive rock, comfortable on the ball and with the height and experience that both managers crave, meaning this should spell January attempts to sign the Frenchman, with the pricetag almost certainly soaring if it becomes a bidding war. And yes, Harry Redknapp and Spurs are interested too, but you obviously already assumed that…
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