COMMENTARY | Arsenal are reportedly interested in a permanent deal for Brazilian striker Alexandre Pato. Gunners manager Arsene Wenger has long been an admirer of the Brazilian international, and even tried bringing the player to the Emirates last January; however, Pato ultimately chose to return to Brazil and joined Corinthians.
Just a few years ago Pato was one of the most sought after young strikers in the world. The former AC Milan player scored 15 league goals for the Italian side at just 19-years-old (he went on to win the Serie A Young Footballer of the Year award following that season). Pato followed up the outstanding 2008-09 season by scoring 30 total goals in his next two seasons with Milan.
However, after a season and a half of subpar play, Pato was then sold to Brazilian side Corinthians in a $20 million move. In his first season with Corinthians Pato scored 17 total goals in 54 appearances with the club. While his scoring record with Corinthians isn't terrible, Pato was often criticized by the fans for missing additional goal chances.
The Express is reporting that Arsenal can get their man in Pato by offering $16 million to Corinthians. The $16 million is about a third of the amount in which the Brazilian was rated at just two years ago as a Milan player.
The Gunners are currently looking to add an additional striker to the squad before the January transfer period ends, and Pato is certainly not the only name on the team's wish list. With Olivier Giroud being the only fit and reliable striker currently at the club, it was not a surprise to hear Arsenal chief executive Ivan Gazidis state that the team will be in the market for a striker during the upcoming transfer market.
Christopher Moore has been following Arsenal Football Club for over 10 years.
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