Arsenal have two signings in the bag in form of Fabio Vieira and Marquinhos, but they are not slowing down in the summer transfer window, with more signings getting closer
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Arsenal are really beginning to motor in the summer transfer window, with two deals confirmed and plenty more in the pipeline to look forward to.
Friday brought the announcement from Porto that Fabio Vieira would be moving to Arsenal in a deal worth £38million. The 22-year-old midfielder will become the club’s second summer signing, after Brazilian forward Marquinhos.
It already appears that the Gunners are not going to stop there, with reports coming in thick and fast surrounding defenders, midfielders and attackers. Finding a striker to replace the departing Alexandre Lacazette remains the top priority, but Mikel Arteta wants significant reinforcements to give him the 22 outfield players he outlined earlier this year.
Arsenal are one of the biggest movers in the early stages of the summer transfer window so far, so let’s take a look at the latest news and rumours surrounding the club.
Leeds set Raphinha price tag
Leeds United winger Raphinha has attracted a lot of attention in recent months, from both Premier League sides and Barcelona. Barca’s interest subsided slightly following Leeds’ survival on the final day of the season and Arsenal have since emerged as a serious contender for the Brazilian.
Understandably, Leeds are keen to keep hold of their star player and The Express reports that they have therefore put a £50million price tag on the 25-year-old.
The Athletic reports that Arsenal will only move for Raphinha if they can find a buyer for Nicolas Pepe first. Pepe arrived from Lille for a club-record £72million three years ago, but is ready to leave this summer. The problem is that Arsenal want to recoup a significant amount of their expenditure in any sale. This one therefore looks set to be a slow burner.
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Gunners step up Martinez pursuit
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The Gunners’ interest in Manchester City striker Gabriel Jesus has dominated the headlines in recent weeks, but they are not just shopping for attacking players. Ajax defender Lisandro Martinez is another target for Arteta, who wants to assemble real depth in central defence alongside Ben White, Gabriel Magalhaes, Rob Holding and William Saliba.
Martinez, who is 24 and a full Argentina international, has developed into one of the best young defenders in Europe and is also wanted by Erik ten Hag at Manchester United. Arsenal are trying to steal a march on their rivals and have already seen a £25million (€30m) bid rejected by Ajax for Martinez.
The Daily Mail says Arsenal have not been deterred by the initial rejection and believe they can secure a deal for £30m. Martinez is reportedly keen on a move to Arsenal, where he would also offer cover at left-back and therefore allow Nuno Tavares time to go out on loan and develop his game further after a shaky debut campaign.
Bellerin pushing for exit
Hector Bellerin is reportedly prepared to write off his salary for the final year of his contract at Arsenal in order to secure a permanent transfer to Spain.
Estadio Deportivo reports that the 27-year-old is keen to return to Real Betis after spending the 2021/22 campaign on loan there, but the Gunners are demanding a transfer fee of £8.6m (€10m) to sell the right-back. Bellerin is so keen to make the move happen that he is willing to tear up his deal with the north London side, thought to be worth £100,000-a-week, to link up with the Seville-based side permanently.
The compromise is similar to the agreement Arsenal reached with Calum Chambers in January to allow him to join Aston Villa. It could prove tempting for the Gunners, who are keen to get fringe players and last season’s loanees, like Lucas Torreira, off their wage bill to make room for new signings.