Gilberto Silva urges Felipe Melo to consider Arsenal
Arsene Wenger has reportedly been interested in Brazilian holding midfielder Felipe Melo. The Confederations Cup winner has been tracked by Wenger throughout his career in Europe whilst plying his trade at Mallorca, Racing Santander, Almeria and currently Fiorentina.
Arsenal lacked some depth in central midfield this season with Denilson and Alexander Song playing a larger part than was expected of them at the start of the season. Many quarters of the Arsenal faithful believe the central defence and central midfield are the key areas that need strengthening if they are to challenge for the Premier League crown again.
With the signing of Thomas Vermaelen from Ajax, the central defence has been bolstered and now it looks like Wenger is looking to bolster another key area. With Cesc Fabregas, Denilson and Alexander Song, Arsenal’s central midfield certainly have youth on their side and it is thought they lacked a little experience throughout the season.
Felipe Melo is a 25 year old Brazilian holding midfielder and has been Gilberto Silva’s sidekick throughout the Confederations Cup tournament in South Africa. The 32 year old former Arsenal midfielder has been very impressed with Melo and believes ‘he is exactly what they need – a powerful player with quality’.
Felipe Melo has a reputation for being a fiery midfielder and that may be what Arsenal lacked all season, a player with a bit of bite and full of tenacity. However, in his first season in Serie A his fiery temper resulted in him receiving 17 yellow cards and 3 red cards in his first season. I’m sure if Arsene Wenger were to sign Melo he would be able to channel his temper in the right fashion as he did with a certain Patrick Vieira when his disciplinary record spiralled out of control.
Arsenal may be in a race with European Champions Barcelona to sign Melo which may be a stumbling block for Wenger. He also may come with a high price tag around the £15million mark. His chances of breaking the first team at Barcelona may be slim though with Yaya Toure, Andres Iniesta, Xavi and Lionel Messi all playing at the top of their game.
Hopefully Gilberto’s praise for Arsenal and recommendation as a club to develop his career may tempt the Brazilian to look for a move to the Premier League and help Arsenal challenge on all fronts come next season. Maybe the Premier League odds will move around a bit if he does make the move!