Linked with a move away:
Willian’s short and unsuccessful spell with Arsenal could be coming to an end this summer, with the Brazilian set to depart the club in a shock turn of events.
It had been reported previously by football.london correspondent Chris Wheatley that the Brazilian had no intention of leaving the club, saying that:
“There is not expected to be a summer exit for Willian however, who is happy in London and has a contract at the club which runs until the summer of 2023.”
His FIRST goal for Arsenal, a wonderful free-kick 💫
Lovely finish 👏 pic.twitter.com/3EHrVvkUVC
— Football on BT Sport (@btsportfootball) May 9, 2021
However, respected transfer news breaker Fabrizio Romano claimed earlier today that “Willian is expected to leave Arsenal this summer” amid interest “from European clubs and from the MLS“. No bids have been made yet, however, with Romano saying that the club are “waiting for official bids”.
After David Luiz, also Willian is expected to leave Arsenal this summer. ⚪️🔴 #AFC
— Fabrizio Romano (@FabrizioRomano) May 16, 2021
A disastrous spell:
Willian has been a disastrous signing for Mikel Arteta’s side. Crossing London on a free transfer 12 months ago, the Brazilian has failed to discover the form that made him such a valued member of the Chelsea squad, only netting his first goal for the Gunners 3 games from the end of the season.
Although the winger has played 25 times in the Premier League for the Gunners, it was only when he began being left out of the side that Arsenal’s form saw a revival, with Emile Smith Rowe and Martin Odegaard bringing significantly more energy in the final third.
Willian would be joining fellow ex-Chelsea Brazilian David Luiz in leaving North London this summer, after it was announced by the Athletic that Arsenal would not be renewing the defender’s contract, which expires in the summer.
David Luiz leaving Arsenal at end of season. 34yo told club today + they agreed. #AFC had not offered new deal & even if they did the Brazil int’l defender wouldn’t have signed as decision had been made to go @TheAthleticUK @SamiMokbel81_DM 1st off mark 👏 https://t.co/W00EY5VOlS
— David Ornstein (@David_Ornstein) May 14, 2021
Mikel Arteta spoke about the club needing to be “ruthless” this summer to progress as a team, and it appears as if the signs of ruthlessness that have long since deserted Arsenal may be returning. Were the club able to offload Willian, he and David Luiz would free up too valuable spots in the squad for non-homegrown players, whilst also saving Arsenal a significant sum on wages.
Not set in stone:
Before Arsenal fans get too carried away, it is important to remember that Romano, although reliable for the most part, has been wrong about Arsenal news before. Most notably, he reported on Sead Kolasinac’s move to Bayer Leverkusen in the summer, which never materialised.
The deal for Sead Kolasinac to Bayer Leverkusen will be completed on next 48 hours. €11m + add ons to Arsenal, confirmed.#AFC want a permanent deal also for Lucas Torreira to Atlético Madrid. Meeting tomorrow too between intermediary and Atléti. ⚪️🔴 #AFC #Atleti https://t.co/BF9QHdbP4Q
— Fabrizio Romano (@FabrizioRomano) September 29, 2020
However, after the disastrous season that the Gunners have endured, any reports about the sale of an unpopular squad player is likely to send waves of joy through the fanbase.
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