Backpage roundup: Ben Arfa, Walcott, Vela, RVP and Flamini

Wenger Tracking Ben Arfa
Hatem Ben Arfa has been linked with a move to Arsenal after the Frenchman recently hinted that he would consider moving to a ‘big club’ this summer. (The Daily Mirror)
The 25-year-old winger, who was one of Newcastle United’s best players in the 2011/12 Premiership season, is apparently being tracked by his countryman Arsene Wenger.
While Chelsea are also rumoured to be interested in Ben Arfa, the player believes that there will be too much competition for places at Stamford Bridge and therefore, a move to Emirates might be better for him.
In a recent interview with The Sun, Ben Arfa said: “If I do not have a really, really serious proposal, I’ll stay. If a big club comes, but does not propose something interesting – that is to say, the coach really wants me – I’ll stay. If I do not feel the confidence of the new coach 100 per cent, I will not leave. I still have three-year contract. But I know it can go fast.”
Walcott Bullish About England’s Chances
Arsenal winger Theo Walcott is confident that England can defeat Italy in their Euro 2012 quarterfinal match this weekend and believes that the Three Lions are capable of beating any team in the competition.
The 23-year-old attacker, who played a major part in England’s 3-2 win over Sweden last Friday, claims that confidence is sky high in his team’s camp and they fear no one.
Walcott said: “Did we want to avoid Spain? Playing the world champions, the European champions, is always going to be difficult but we will take anyone at this moment in time. We believe we can beat anyone the way we are playing. If we play to the best of our ability, who knows what can happen?
“We defend well, we always know we can score goals so, if we keep clean sheets, we will definitely win. The Italians will be tough, but we’ve got some great players in that dressing room and I think we can go far. We’ve got a great chance.”
Vela Seeking Answers from Arsenal
Carlos Vela’s agent Eduardo Hernandez has revealed that Arsenal still haven’t told him whether his client will be allowed to spend another season on loan at Spanish club Real Sociedad.
The Mexican forward has failed to establish himself at Arsenal and it is believed that he is not in coach Arsene Wenger’s long-term plans. He spent the 2011/12 season in Spain with Real Sociedad, who are keen to secure his services for at least another year.
Vela also wants to extend his stay at the Spanish club but his agent says that the Gunners have yet to discuss the issue with them.
In an interview with El Mundo Deportivo, Hernandez said: “Arsenal is tough at the moment of negotiations, but Carlos is calm and he doesn’t have any hurry. The first thing that we have to do is to resolve the situation with Arsenal. I am waiting for a call from Arsenal.
“The first thing that we need to know is what they have in mind regarding Carlos. I can’t have any meeting with Real Sociedad until they say to me what they want to do. We have already spoken about what Carlos’ desire is. He was very comfortable at Real Sociedad and he said several times that he would like to continue there.”
Wenger: RVP Will Never Swap BPL for ‘Inferior’ Serie A
Arsene Wenger has tried to rebuff Juventus’ attempts to sign Robin van Persie by saying that the Arsenal captain will never join an ‘inferior’ league like Serie A. (The Sun)
The Turin giants have long been interested in acquiring the services of van Persie, who could be sold by Arsenal this summer, if talks over a contract extension prove fruitless. But no matter what happens, Wenger believes that the Dutch striker will never leave the Barclays Premier League for Serie A due to the vast difference in quality.
When some Italian journalists pressed Wenger for a statement on van Persie’s future, he said: “I am certain that Robin will remain with us. If you want to know why, it is because there is no reason in this world why a great player like van Persie should go and play for you, in Italy and in your competition. Your football is at an inferior level to the Premier League.”
Former Gunner Flamini Available for Free                                                                                         
Former Arsenal midfielder Mathieu Flamini has been given a free transfer by AC Milan, the Italian club has confirmed. (The Sun)
The 28-year-old Frenchman, who swapped Emirates Stadium for San Siro in 2008, was offered a new contract by Milan, but the terms offered were way short of the player’s expectations. He decided not to sign the new deal and has therefore, been released by Milan.
The club’s vice-president Adriano Galliani told the press: “The deadline has passed and we told his lawyer we won’t be waiting anymore.”

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