Arsenal are reportedly prepared to pay a hefty £24 million in order to sign Benfica striker Rodrigo, according to reports in Daily Star.
The 23 year old has been in fine season this season, scoring 18 goals in 40 appearances for the Europa League finalists.
The report states that Arsenal are desperate to land the Brazilian born striker, but will have to await the outcome of a complicated arrangement with Valencia. The Spanish side’s new owner Peter Lim has an investment group who own the rights to the forward, meaning that the Gunners will have to concede first refusal to the La Liga team.
It further states that if Arsenal do offer big money for the forward, then Lim will have to decide whether a significant profit for himself would outweigh his new sides need for a striker.
The Spain Under-21 international enjoyed a brief spell playing in the Premier League with Bolton during the 2010/11 campaign. He only managed to score one goal in England’s top domestic league, but has blossomed into one of Europe’s most promising strikers after moving to Portugal.
Rodrigo predominately operates as a striker but can be deployed as a winger or just behind the strikers. He is speedy, intelligent on the ball and clever at making runs. His natural confidence on the ball has really come to the fore this season as the improving striker has appeared increasingly willing to take control of games. He is a smart dribbler, someone who can bypass challenges with a clever flick or turn, but also needs his teammates to provide quick support if he is to work diligently.
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He may struggle with the consistent physicality of England’s top flight as he netted just one goal during his spell with Bolton and isn’t the type of forward to continually excel when holding the ball up against powerful centre-backs. Instead he is most lethal when making smart runs and feeding off through balls, something Arsenal can provide in abundance. He needs a team that plays quick passes to feet and instantly bursts forward to support, something the Gunners must exert with greater enthusiasm.
He could be an excellent signing but he is not worth £24 million due to his physical limitations, although he is still developing. However if we can get him for a fee in the range of £15 million then it’s justifiable or else it’s better to search elsewhere.
Should Arsenal invest £24 million in the Brazilian-born Spaniard? Share your thoughts in the comments below.