First offer rejected
As per BBC Sport, Arsenal have rejected Roma’s opening bid for Gunners midfielder Granit Xhaka.
Jose Mourinho’s side were reported to have produced a 12.9 million pound (15 million euros) offer, but the Gunners are thought to be holding out for around the 20 million euro mark.
However, Football.LDN claimed last week that Xhaka has already agreed personal terms with the Italian club, and that a deal was close to completion.
Granit Xhaka has agreed a five year contract with Roma.
Fee is expected to be in the region of €18-20m.
He’ll become a Roma player very soon. 🔴 #AFC
— Chris Wheatley (@ChrisWheatley_) June 10, 2021
Xhaka was a vital cog of Mikel Arteta’s Arsenal side last season, making 31 Premier League appearances in a disappointing campaign for the Gunners. The Swiss international formed a strong partnership with new signing Thomas Partey at the base of Arsenal’s midfield, and his absence in the centre of the pitch against Villareal was conspicuous.
However, he has not endured the best relationship with the club or fans during his spell in North London, famously throwing his shirt away when subbed against Crystal Palace in 2019. Having been booed when subbed, Xhaka responded explosively in an episode that ultimately cost him the captaincy.
Arsenal fans were wrong for booing him off. Xhaka was wrong for reacting in the way he did. Everyone was wrong, simple.
— Bhavs (@bhavss14) October 27, 2019
A new midfield direction?
It seems as though Arteta has decided to move on from the 28-year-old, with alternative targets being looked at. The profiles of players being looked at, with the notable exception of Wolves midfielder Ruben Neves, suggests that Arsenal are looking for a more athletic midfielder.
The Gunners have already had a 15 million euro bid for Belgian midfielder Albert Sambi-Lokonga rejected, and are expected to return with a second offer.
Anderlecht have rejected Arsenal’s first offer for Belgian midfielder Albert Sambi-Lokonga (21).
Arsenal offered more than €15m (bonuses included). The Belgian club are hoping for €20m.#AFC
— Kristof Terreur (@HLNinEngeland) June 15, 2021
The North London outfit have also been linked with moves for Yves Bissouma, Houssem Aouar and Donny Van De Beek in recent weeks, none of whom fit the same profile as Xhaka. With so few midfield options, it would be unsurprising to see the Gunners sign more than one midfielder.
For the time being, however, Xhaka is going nowhere.
This article was edited by Josh Barker.
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