Arsenal offered Chelsea’s Willian a £250,000 per week deal prior to the global pandemic, according to John Cross of the Mirror.
It isn’t clear whether the Gunners will follow through with that deal to sign the Brazilian winger who will be a free agent in the summer. The implications on the club’s finances due to the coronavirus could provide a roadblock to Arsenal standing by any such deal with the 31 year old.
Free agents are always offered more lucrative contracts by clubs because of the absence of any transfer fee. The financial package for players who are out of contract in the summer is expected to shrink by up to 50%. Elite players like Willian, Adam Lallana and Jan Vertonhgen who will be out of contract in the summer are likely to receive contract offers that are worth 25% less than they would have been prior to the pandemic.
Willian’s agent is Kia Joorabchian, a man who is known to have close ties to the Arsenal hierarchy. He also represents Cedric Soares and David Luiz who have both recently signed new deals at the club. Arsenal have made it clear that Joorabchian is not Edu Gaspar’s agent contrary to what has previously been reported in the press. The fact that he is Willian’s agent makes this deal more likely to happen.
Another player that is represented by Joorabchian is Philippe Coutinho. It is believed that the Iranian agent will attempt to bring the Barcelona player to the Emirates this summer. Arsenal would not be able to afford a permanent transfer and would also find his wages prohibitive to any possible move for the player. The deal would have to be a loan and Barcelona would have to subsidise Coutinho’s wages.
It may sound like bringing Coutinho to Arsenal this summer is unlikely due to the North London club’s financial limitations but Joorabchian’s involvement means it shouldn’t be ruled out.
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