Saturday, June 17, 2023

New bid, £50m for Havertz, Caicedo blow, Lavia move - Arsenal midfield transfer latest

The transfer window may only have just officially opened, but it’s already looking like it’s going to be a busy one for Arsenal. Mikel Arteta wants to bolster his squad options as he prepares to lead them to both Premier League and Champions League glory.

“At the level that we want no,” the Spaniard told football.londonwhen asked if he felt his side had enough to compete in both the Premier League and Champions League next season as things stand. “We didn’t have the capacity to do that as well with the Europa League so it’s part of that evolution. We have made a lot of good steps and strong steps in that journey and we have to continue. That never ends.”

 

Arteta would like to add at least one defender to his group for next season, while an attacker is also on the agenda. The place where there is expected to be the most movement though is in the midfield.

This is set to begin with the departure of Granit Xhaka. The Swiss international has agreed a move to Bayer Leverkusen and bade a fine farewell to the Emirates Stadium faithful with his first ever Arsenal brace in the final day victory against Wolves. Arsenal will only let Xhaka leave officially though once a replacement is through the door.

 

This could come in the form of Declan Rice. The Gunners submitted a first bid for the England international on Thursday that would have seen them pay £80million over six years. That was instantly rebuffed however, with West Ham wanting more of the money up front. Arsenal remain confident that the deal can be done, but their stance is that it will ultimately come down to the player to decide amid interest from sides like Manchester City and Chelsea.

Ilkay Gundogan is another player they have looked at in the midfield position. The German is yet to have made a concrete decision on his future, with his contract ending and was officially release by Manchester City on Friday. Barcelona have also shown interest though, and City would like to keep him and are currently in talks over extending his deal.

For now Arsenal seem more focused on Gundogan’s international teammate Kai Havertz. They hold a genuine interest in the 24-year-old, but Chelsea want £70million. Arsenal feel this is a little steep given that he has two years left on his contract and has never been a consistent performer at Stamford Bridge, and would like to pay nearer to the £50million mark. For his part Havertz is understood to be open to the move, but unwilling to push for it as things stand.

With those deals happening it seems unlikely that Arsenal will go back in for Moises Caicedo. The Gunners offered up to £75million for the Ecuadorian in January and ideally wanted both him and Rice over the line by the end of the summer window. Since then though, Caicedo has signed a new contract meaning that Brighton are likely to demand an even higher fee for him this time around. Chelsea are understood to be front runners for his signature, although football.london understands that Arsenal’s interest is not completely over at this stage of the window.

For now though, it seems that Romeo Lavia may be a more realistic move. The Belgian could be available for a cheaper fee after Southampton’s relegation. If Arsenal want him they will have to move now as his former club Manchester City have a buyback clause that activates in 2024. Lavia could be a long-term replacement for Thomas Partey who reportedly has interest from two Italian clubs. Jorginho meanwhile is set to stay put, but Albert Sambi Lokonga and Charlie Patino are both likely to leave.

Who should stay and who should go at Arsenal this summer? Have your say below!

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