Arsenal in advanced talks with 17-year-old Portuguese attacker

The London giants look determined to land Sporting Lisbon’s 17-year old youngster Joelson Fernandes as Arsenal plot a second and improved bid after their £18m opening offer was rejected by the Portuguese club.

Joelson, who has been widely dubbed as ‘the next Cristiano Ronaldo’ has recently set the Portuguese footballing world alight after being promoted to Sporting’s senior squad after the league’s restart earlier this year.

Fernandes went onto make his competitive debut against domestic counterparts Gil Vicente which saw him write his name in Lion folklore, becoming the Sporting’s third-youngest debutant. Arsenal manager is keen on luring the future star from his homeland to the London club.

Arsenal reportedly opened discussions with an £18m offer, however, it is understood that the Lions will not entertain the prospect of letting their highly-rated teenager depart for a sum less than his release clause, reported to be £40m.

During a week which sees the Spanish manager hopeful of resolving Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang’s deal situation, Gunners supporters could finally see their London club’s transfer plans made a reality.

However, they are prepared to try again by once again sending out representatives to Lisbon this week. Fernandes apparently has a release clause of £40m. But, the Gunners are looking to test Sporting’s financial mettle, especially after the covid-19 crisis by offering bids well below that amount.

Gunners decision to continue their pursuit of the Portuguese winger comes just days after their FA Cup triumph that has not only handed the club their first title under the Spanish manager but has also helped them secure Europa League football next campaign.