Wednesday, July 09, 2008
Arsenal agree transfer for midfielder as agent flies to Athens to discuss personal terms
By 1970’s Gooner
Arsenal have agreed to transfer Gilberto Silva to Panathinaikos and Gilberto may be keen on the idea too.
Ken Friar is reported today in the Greek press as having said that he has, on behalf of Arsenal, come to an agreement in principle with Panathinaikos president Nikos Pateras.
All that remains now is for the player to agree personal terms for the deal to go through.
"If Gilberto agrees personal terms then we will not stand in his way" Friar said to Greek paper "SportDay". "If this happens then it seems that we will agree a transfer fee with Panathinaikos".
For this reason the meeting that was scheduled to take place today in London has been transferred to the more sunny climate of Athens where Gilberto’s agent, Frank Trimboli, from “Base” agency will carry out the negotiations.
He may be taking with him Greek speaking Sakis Tzikas, an ex footballer in Greece who is a consultant with “Base”, so that he could help with the negotiations.
"Base" Agency has a number of footballers on its books such as Aaron Lennon and Tom Huddlestone of Tottenham and Andy Johnson of Everton.
Gilberto himself who is holidaying on his farm in Brazil is reported to have said that if personal terms are satisfactory then he will consider coming to Athens.
“I don’t have a problem about playing in Greece if the financial terms are satisfactory” he said.
As we first revealed two days ago on this site, the Greek club are willing to meet Gilberto’s demand for a three year contract with the same wages he is currently on at Arsenal (£2m per year).
The third year however will come into force if Gilberto plays in 50% of the games the year before.
What has accelerated the deal has been the decline in the interest originally shown by two German clubs, Werder Bremen and Borussia Dortmund who could not meet the player’s high wage demands.
Panathinaikos, which now has former Chelsea assistant boss Henk Ten Cate as their head coach, are very keen to conclude the deal which for them will be considered a major scoop.
They expect that part of the outlay will be recovered form an expected surge in season ticket sales as Gilberto’s reputation as a World Cup winner and a current international with Brazil ranks highly.
Gilberto will also, if the deal goes through, have fellow Brazilian Rivaldo for company. He has been exciting the crowds with his sublime skills for a number of years at Athens based clubs Olympiakos and currently with AEK.
Various transfer fees are reported in the press which are between £1m and £2.5m.
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