Reports are emerging that suggest Arsenal have triggered a release clause in the contract of Leicester City striker Jamie Vardy.
According to BBC Sport, Sky Sports and other media outlets, The Gunners have made a £20million bid for the 29-year-old, thereby triggering a clause in his contract that would allow him to speak to other clubs.
Vardy, who joined Leicester from Fleetwood for £1million in 2012, scored 24 goals in the Premier League last season as the Foxes defied odds of 5,000-1 to claim the title.
Vardy is currently on international duty with England as they prepare for the European Championships in France.
It has been reported that Vardy signed a new deal with Leicester in February which tied him to the club for three years.
If true, the bid would signal an uncharacteristically bold move from Arsene Wenger, especially this early in the usual summer merry-go-round of transfer rumour, speculation and brinksmanship.
In years gone by, Wenger has left his business agonisingly late – seat of pants late – so wrapping up a second transfer before the window had even officially opened would be a surprise, if not entirely unwelcome, move.
But it would be a shrewd move, if true, especially if Vardy enjoys a blistering European campaign. A glut of goals in a strong England performance (no, really) would add millions to his value in an instant. Moving now, before that possibility becomes a reality, is smart from Wenger.
Whether Vardy is the man to solve Arsenal’s goal-scoring problems is another matter entirely, however. At this moment in time, I’m content to allow this situation to play out but, on gut instinct alone, I’m a little sceptical.
Arsenal need a striker of renown, of pedigree, of a scale which will give defenders nightmares. Is Jamie Vardy that man? He has a goal-scorer’s instinct and is ruthlessly efficient in front of goal, but has his success been based on a style of play that he won’t find at the Emirates?
Watch this space.