Backpage Roundup: Arsenal Bid £12 Million for Zaha, Laudrup Dismisses Arsenal’s Title Chances, Gervinho Set to Start Against Swansea, Gazidis’ New UEFA Jobs and More

Laudrup Dismisses Arsenal’s Title Chances

Swansea City manager Michael Laudrup has discarded Arsenal’s title chances and believes that only the two Manchester clubs and Chelsea are fighting for the Premiership trophy.

The Danish trainer is a big fan of coach Arsene Wenger’s work and philosophy but he doesn’t believe that the Gunners have what it takes to win the league.

Ahead of Swansea’s clash with Arsenal, Laudrup was asked if he sees Arsenal as a genuine title contender, to which he said: “No. Not because they have dropped points but because I think the title is only between the two Manchester clubs and Chelsea, and at the moment the Manchester clubs have the advantage in terms of points and momentum.

“The Manchester sides are very strong, they win tough games. Look at Manchester City at Wigan. It was a difficult game, it was 0-0 for a long time, and then they get two goals and three points and head home. They are very solid and win games when they are not playing well.”

 

Arsenal Offer £12 million for Zaha

Arsenal FC have started negotiations with Crystal Palace to sign their in-demand winger Wilfried Zaha, according to a report by Goal.com.

The website claim that the Gunners want to take the 20-year-old to Emirates Stadium in the winter transfer window and are willing to pay up to £12 million in a structured deal.

The Eagles co-chairman Steve Parish and manager Ian Holloway both recently told the press that they intend to keep hold of Zaha until at least the end of the season but Arsenal are confident that a transfer can take place in January.

 

Next Six Games Crucial For Gunners – Wenger

Arsene Wenger feels that Arsenal’s next six Premier League games are very crucial and will play a huge part in shaping up their season.

The seventh-placed Gunners currently trail league leaders Manchester United by a massive 12 points but most of their starting 14 matches were played away from home. However, they are scheduled to play four of their next six games at their own Emirates Stadium and the Arsenal boss believes it is a great chance for his side to reduce the gap.

In an interview with Arsenal.com, Wenger said:  “At the moment the two Manchester sides [are top]. They have not been spectacular but efficient, and they have made the maximum of the chances they have created. For example, Manchester United have already lost three games and have lost in the Champions League as well. It is exactly what we have done but they took more points and had less draws than we did. That has been the difference until now.

“We will come back. Now we have six games, four at home, and if we do well in this block I think we have a chance to come back. But of course it is vital for us to do well in these games.”

 

Gervinho Set to Start against Swansea

Arsene Wenger is expected to reinstate Gervinho in Arsenal’s starting line-up for their Saturday’s clash with Swansea at Emirates.

The Ivory Coast international, who last started a match for the Gunners in October, has been playing second fiddle to Olivier Giroud for the past few weeks. But Wenger is thinking about giving the French striker a bit of rest and therefore, Gervinho could be back in starting line-up against the Welsh club.

 

Gazidis Given Important UEFA Roles

Arsenal CEO Ivan Gazidis has landed two more jobs in the UEFA setup, meaning his and the Gunners’ profile will rise some more in European football.

The 48-year-old will represent the European Club Association (ECA) on the UEFA professional strategy council and has also been made a member of the ECA executive board.

About the new roles, Gazidis said: “I am delighted to be joining these important groups which are hugely influential in the future direction of the game in Europe. I am looking forward to representing the top European clubs in many important debates as we move ahead.”

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