Is Ribery now out of Arsenal’s and Manchester United’s reach?

With Marseille qualifying for the Champions League, Ribery’s asking price has shot up to 20m at least.

The big question now is – who can afford him, and which team will go after him?

Ribery has said time and again that he has one dream – to play in the CL with a big club (presumably so he has a chance of winning the damn thing). He’s not going to win the CL with Marseille, although he might impress enough to get a big transfer to Barcelona / Madrid / Inter / Chelsea.

Arsenal and Manchester United will both give Ribery a good chance to win the Champions League, and both Arsenal and Manchester United are looking for wingers.

But now that he’s reputed to cost 20m, will either Arsenal or Manchester United be willing to spend 20m+ on a very good player? Both clubs have money to spend but would rather spare it if they can. Both clubs are also attractive destinations – Arsenal has the French connection and United are the league champions.

Assuming that Chelsea are not dumping Robben and that Barcelona are keeping Ronny, can Arsenal and Manchester United beat out Madrid and Bayern for Ribery’s signature? Both clubs (Madrid and Bayern), by the way, are also interested in Robben.

There’s a real danger that after a certain point Arsenal could say that no, that’s way too much money for a player. Manchester United could do the same – they’ve been outbid in the last couple of years by Inter, Madrid and Chelsea (although money wasn’t the only case in all three cases).

So – is Ribery out of Arsenal’s and Manchester United’s reach now that Marseille are in the Champions League?

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