Arsenal are reportedly seeking ‘free transfers and swap deals’ this summer as the club face up to the financial implications of the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.
The north London side are amongst a host of Premier League sides looking to cut costs amid a lack of revenue at present, already agreeing a wage-cut of 12.5% with the majority of their first-team squad and core coaching staff.
The impact of the global pandemic, however, means the club’s finances will be restricted in the transfer market and according to the Mail, the Gunners’ recruitment staff will forced to ‘shop shrewdly’ this summer, targetting ‘free transfers and swap deals’ in a bid to keep costs under control.
One potential free agent who has been strongly linked with a move to the Emirates is Chelsea winger Willian, the Brazil international out-of-contract this summer and keen to remain in the Premier League.
The 31-year-old has won two league titles during a seven-season stay at Stamford Bridge but his time with the club looks set to end this summer, with Tottenham also reportedly monitoring his situation, and the experienced star could prove a sensible and cost-efficient addition.
With spending set to be restricted across the continent as football feels the squeeze of the Covid-19 crisis, there has also reportedly been a growing interest in potential swap deals in a bid to cut costs.
Swap deals have often been a rarity in football circles given the difficulty in agreeing value between clubs, though Arsenal were involved in one of the most high-profile examples in recent years when exchanging Alexis Sanchez for Henrikh Mkhitaryan from Manchester United two years ago.
The club will likely be hoping for better results this summer though, with both players having failed to reproduce their best form and having since been loaned out to Serie A sides.