Prolific striker Jackson Martinez had a dream season so far, starting from last year’s World Cup at Brazil, where he scored both his goals in a group stage match against Japan. He also helped Colombia reach the quarter-finals where they lost 2-1 to Brazil. Despite his club F.C. Porto not being able to win any silverware, he played a big role in their reaching the quarter-finals of the UEFA Champions League, as well as finishing runners-up in the Portuguese Primeira Liga. He has also been the top scorer in Primeira Liga for the past three seasons. However his consistency in performing at the top-level has invited strong rumours of him leaving Porto for a host of big clubs. Arsenal are supposedly leading the pack trying to sign him over the upcoming transfer window.
One of his memorable performances this year was the goal against Bayern Munich in during the home leg for Porto, during the Champions league quarter-final. He received a long ball from left-back Alex Sandro, and slotted home after rounding off Neuer. Although he scored again in the away fixture, Porto were comprehensively beaten by Bayern 6-1 (agg 7-4). Based on statistics, in the Champions League, he has out done the likes of Cristiano Ronaldo, Lionel Messi, Neymar as well as Sergio Agüero. He sits ahead of them in the minutes-per-goal table, with the value of 89.85. Only Luiz Adriano of Shakhtar Donetsk, is ahead of him, at 78.5 minutes-per-goal.
Amidst strong transfer-talk, Martinez’ agent Henrique Pompeo has claimed: “There is a club that’s willing to pay £24.7m for the buy-out clause.” This club has been widely assumed to be Arsenal, who are in the hunt for an out-an-out centre forward. However, due to Financial Fair-Play regulations, the Gunners may only be able to bid for the Colombian once they have cleared some room in their wage-bill.
Lukas Podolski, Yaya Sanogo and Joel Campbell, were all loaned out to various clubs last season. Sanogo and Campbell will most likely be loaned out again to gain valuable 1st-team experience. Podolski, who spent the 2nd half of last season at Inter Milan, stated over his uncertainty at Arsenal: “Things can always change, but if needs be I will remain at Arsenal next season.” Tomáš Rosický, a veteran of the Arsenal squad, has been very vocal regarding his current situation at the club. After making only 14 appearances in the Premier League this season, he has said: “It’s frustrating but I am a professional. Even if you lose your place, you must still be prepared because the situation can change.” He is considering his options before Arsenal’s pre-season tour begins. He added: “I’ll start the summer preparation with Arsenal and that’s the whole of my plan for the time being.” Hence, Jackson Martinez’ alleged transfer to Arsenal will wait until the Gunners resolve these issues, in order to make way for the forward.
Martinez is the captain of F.C. Porto and is contracted to the club till the end of 2016-17 season. He is currently at Chile, training with the Colombian national football team for the Copa America 2015, which starts from Wednesday, June 11th.
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