The transfer window my have slammed shut without Arsenal adding to their summer buys, but the rumours about an interest in Ghanaian captain Stephen Appiah refuse to go away.
The 27-year-old terminated his contract with Fenerbahce during the closed season and the fact that he is now a free agent means that he can still sign for anyone, with the English interest said to be with West Ham, Portsmouth and, of course, the Gunners.
As Appiah is no longer attached to a club, he is free to come to England as a trialist and given that Arsene Wenger prefers to run the rule over players during week-long trials, the possibility of him becoming an Arsenal player are not beyond the realms of possibility.
Appiah has been plagued by injury and illness, but having signed Amaury Bischoff and Mikael Silvestre as crocked players during the summer, the African’s problems would not prevent Le Gaffer from considering him.
The fact that Appiah is his country’s skipper is also a bonus, while the fee – or lack of it – might also appeal to the Arsenal manager...
Appiah himself has expressed a desire to join the Gunners and the club reportedly sent a scout to watch him during Ghana’s clash with Libya last Friday.
One potential stumbling block for a deal that has been mentioned in certain quarters is an accusation that Appiah and other Ghana players accepted a bribe from an Asian betting syndicate to throw their game against Brazil in the 2006 World Cup.
Arsene Wenger is a steely campaigner against corruption in the beautiful game and if he thought a player could be bought, there’s no way he’d consider offering him a contract.
However, Appiah has strenuously denied the allegation and the Ghana Football Association is considering legal action against the Canadian author who made the claims.
Appiah says, “The truth of the matter is that I have never accepted money to influence the outcome of a game and never will.”
The midfielder admits to meeting the author but insists he might have been misquoted. “He interviewed me but all I told him was that we are given money to win. Maybe he misunderstood me but I was only talking about winning bonus which is a common thing from the Ghana Football Association,” says Appiah.
So with that little misunderstanding cleared up, could we be seeing Stephen coming to London Colney for a trial with the club? And more to the point, could he slot into the Arsenal system and give Wenger better options in the middle of the park?
I tend to think he won't come, but what do you lot reckon?