The race for Bologna striker Joshua Zirkzee is heating up, with Premier League giants Arsenal and Manchester United reportedly vying for his signature. However, a Bayern Munich buy-back clause casts a shadow over the potential deal, potentially scuppering the English clubs’ hopes.
Zirkzee, 22, has impressed in Serie A this season, scoring 10 goals and showcasing his blend of physical power and technical ability. His form has attracted the attention of numerous clubs, with Arsenal and Manchester United at the forefront of the chase. Both are in dire need of attacking reinforcements, with Mikel Arteta seeking a long-term solution to Arsenal’s striking woes, while Erik ten Hag aims to bolster Manchester United’s inconsistent forward line.
However, their pursuit is complicated by Bayern Munich’s buy-back clause. The German giants, who sold Zirkzee in 2021, hold the right to re-purchase him for a reported €20 million, significantly lower than Bologna’s €40 million release clause. This gives Bayern a significant advantage, allowing them to match any offer made by other clubs and reclaim the young striker.
The Arsenal angle:
Arsenal’s attack has lacked a cutting edge this season, with Alexandre Lacazette and Eddie Nketiah struggling to consistently convert chances. Zirkzee’s presence could provide Arteta with a more clinical option, someone who can hold the ball up, link play, and finish ruthlessly. However, the potential for Bayern to swoop in at the last minute could deter Arsenal from committing a hefty transfer fee.
The Manchester United dilemma:
Similar to Arsenal, Manchester United’s attack has lacked consistency and firepower. Cristiano Ronaldo’s age and Marcus Rashford’s struggles have highlighted the need for a reliable goalscorer. Zirkzee’s profile fits the bill, but Ten Hag will have to navigate the tricky situation posed by Bayern’s buy-back clause. Offering a fee significantly higher than €20 million could be risky, leaving them vulnerable to Bayern’s intervention.
The Zirkzee factor:
While the transfer tug-of-war plays out, Zirkzee remains focused on his performances at Bologna. The youngster has expressed his desire to play at the highest level but has refused to be drawn into speculation about his future. Ultimately, the decision will likely depend on Bayern’s stance. If they choose not to exercise their buy-back clause, then a bidding war between Arsenal and Manchester United could ensue.
The race for Joshua Zirkzee promises to be one of the most intriguing transfer sagas of the window. Both Arsenal and Manchester United desperately need a striker, but Bayern Munich hold the key with their buy-back clause. The next few weeks will be crucial in determining Zirkzee’s destination and adding another chapter to the ongoing rivalry between the English giants.
DISCLAIMER: This team is based on the understanding, analysis, and instinct of the author. While selecting your team, consider the points mentioned and make your own decision.