Andre Santos’ poor form and lack of concentration are starting to influence his Arsenal career. Although with Kieran Gibbs out of the game for at least another 7 weeks and with newly signed Nacho Monreal unable to play in the next stage of the Champions League, it seems Wenger is still unwilling to count on the Brazilian left back. It appears that the relationship between the French coach and Santos has gone cold and that the defender is not satisfied with the chances he has been given to prove himself. On the other hand Arsenal’s coach repeatedly said that it is very obvious that the Brazilian has problems concentrating and does not give his all with every match. Add that to the fact that Santos is one of the oldest players Arsenal has, and you could think that he is sure to depart as soon as a deal can be reached.
Rumors have it that over the past days Brazilian club Gremio started courting Santos. It is the most probable destination for Arsenal’s left back considering not many clubs can afford to transfer him or to pay his current salary. During the transfer period Santos turned down the chance of playing with Sneijder, Felipe Melo and Eboue, who are playing in Galatasaray’s colors these days. This was probably a result of Kieran Gibbs’s injury and the fact that Monreal was transferred with a few hours before the transfer window closed. Santos probably hoped he would be Wenger’s first choice but it seems the newly acquired Spanish defender is doing a better job already than the 29 year old Brazilian.
If Santos is to head towards his home country, this may happen two weeks from now considering Vermaelen is currently sidelined by an ankle injury. Vermaelen would the only option to replace Monreal as a left back so until the Belgian international is recovered, Santos is not able to leave. According to Gremio’s managerial team, the deal is already on the table and it is up for signing. The club president, Fabio Koff said that it has already taken a lot of time to put together a contract that is satisfying for all parts involved in the transfer and that patience is key when it comes to negotiating with a club as big as Arsenal.
Apparently although Santos will be an important transfer for Gremio, he wasn’t their first choice. They went after Liverpool’s Fabio Aurelio. Their second choice was Emiliano Insua who is now with Atletico Madrid. There are a few days left to register Arsenal’s left back in order to be able to play in the Copa Libertadores. Even if he signs before Tuesday he will probably only leave the Gunners in a couple of weeks.