I know you don't like transfer rumors. I know this. But I'm gonna get you to read them today, ‘cause it's Sunday; you ain't got no job...and you ain't got shit to do.
No, I haven't lost my mind, but Smokey's most famous line from Friday feels apt for a Sunday morning in the doldrums of the international break. There are no matches to discuss and no one really gets amped for World Cup qualifiers, so we might as well dip our toes into the transfer waters, right?
There are 10 matches remaining on the Serie A calendar and the Champions League and Europa League finals are still two months away, so transfer rumors are really all we have to hang onto at the moment.
And earlier this weekend, the British and Italian press picked up on an intriguing Roma-themed rumor:
Roma, Sevilla and Atletico Madrid are all in the running for Arsenal forward Alexander Lacazette, who will be a free agent next summer https://t.co/Cuy7IuNjA7 #ASRoma #AFC #SevillaFC #Atleti #Arsenal pic.twitter.com/LkbF8z7VR0— footballitalia (@footballitalia) March 27, 2021
Football Italia recently passed along a rumor sourced by multiple outlets at this point, one that would see 29-year-old French forward Alexander Lacazette leave Arsenal after four seasons, 161 appearances, 61 goals, and 22 assists. Arsenal may not have gotten a full return on their €53 million investment in Lacazette, but that's still a pretty impressive haul. So what gives? Why is this marriage in danger of dissolving?
Well, according to the rumors, Lacazette and Arsenal haven't held any talks over a new contract. Ordinarily, this wouldn't be a story but with Lacazette's contract set to expire in 2022, Arsenal runs the risk of losing him on a Bosman next summer. And in the absence of contract negotiations, speculation is now running rampant that the Gunners might be willing to part with Lacazette this summer.
Lacazette, who is valued at approximately €35 million, has notched double-digit goals for the eighth consecutive season and has chipped in two assists to boot. And what's more, Lacazette continues to flash impressive versatility, making appearances at striker, wide forward, and attacking midfielder. If Arsenal does indeed sell Lacazette this summer, expect Roma to face stiff competition from the likes of Atletico Madrid and Sevilla.
With Roma seemingly connected to every striker on the market, including players as varied as Andrea Belotti, Mauro Icardi, Dusan Vlahovic, and Moise Kean, it’s no secret that Roma is looking to replace Edin Dzeko this summer.
But just who exactly they sign, or even who dominates the rumor cycle, should give us an indication of the club's true intentions for Borja Mayoral, the 23-year-old forward on loan from Real Madrid. Roma holds two purchase options on Mayoral: €15 million in June 2021 and €20 million in June 2022.
If Roma makes a play for someone like Lacazette—a 29-year-old veteran with a few years left in him—we can assume that Tiago Pinto views Mayoral as Roma's striker of the future, so Lacazette would serve as a starter/mentor of sorts. If, however, Roma goes whole hog and buys a young striker like Vlahovic or Kean or a player in his prime like Belotti or Icardi, then Mayoral clearly isn't at the top of the Trigoria pecking order.
Either way, with Dzeko's days numbered in the Eternal City, Roma seems assured to bring in a new striker this summer.
What type of striker should Roma sign this summer?
This poll is closed
Someone young to compete with Mayoral
An in their prime striker to replace Dzeko AND Mayoral at once
A veteran to augment/complement Mayoral