Arsenal Transfer Rumours: Goalkeeper ready to leave, Battle for American midfielder, French defender on the radar

                                        Benfica keen on signing £100,000-a-week Arsenal goalkeeper

Arsenal shot-stopper Bernd Leno is a target for Benfica in the summer, with the goalkeeper ready to be allowed to leave if a reasonable offer comes in. Arsenal have set a €10m asking price, which could pose a problem for the Eagles.

The Portuguese giants have played a crucial role in developing many top footballers, currently plying their trade in Europe’s top-five leagues. Benfica have a specific business model to bring in unpolished diamonds and sell them on for a profit when the interest is rife.

While teams like the Eagles heavily rely on footballer development, very rarely do they venture out to buy established footballers in their prime. However, Benfica are keen on such a deal this summer, with current manager Roger Schmidt keen on Bernd Leno.

The German manager had worked with his compatriot at Bayer Leverkusen for nearly three years. He is willing to convince the Eagles to sign the goalkeeper, as the Portuguese side are not fully on board to spend significantly on a shot-stopper.

But the Gunners’ €10m valuation is proving to be a problem. Bernd has been playing second-fiddle to summer arrival Aaron Ramsdale this campaign, making only eight games across all tournaments.

His lack of playing time could also see him not get selected for Germany’s squad for the World Cup, although he could still have time to make amends. The Gunners, for their part, are open to a sale, having already signed Matt Turner in January.

                             Arsenal started negotiations with €25m-rated Serie A midfielder

Juventus midfielder Weston McKennie is attracting strong interest from the PL. Arsenal, Tottenham and Newcastle United are said to be admirers of USA international, with the three teams willing to shell out €40m to sign the midfielder.

Weston came through the youth academy of Schalke 04 after moving from the United States at a very young age. Having progressed through the ranks, McKennie became a regular at the first-team level for the Bundesliga giants, establishing himself as one of the most exciting young talents in Germany.

The Bianconeri came calling for the 23-year-old midfielder during the summer of 2020, signing him on loan with an option to make the transfer permanent. The American midfielder was one of the few positives for the Old Lady in a disappointing 2020/21 season under Andrea Pirlo, which prompted Juventus to trigger the permanent purchase clause.

However, the former Schalke 04 midfielder has found playing time hard to come by under Massimiliano Allegri this time out. McKennie has featured in just 28 games across all tournaments for the Bianconeri, although he has been out of action since February due to an injury.

Even then, the Old Lady are open to the prospect of selling him in the summer, with Arsenal, Newcastle United and Tottenham showing interest. The Gunners had been linked with Weston in the past, and the interest looks to have been rekindled as the Spanish manager is keen on adding more quality to his midfield.

                                    Arsenal interested in signing €20m-rated France international

Arsenal could be a possible destination for Samuel Umtiti in the summer transfer window, with Barcelona keen on offloading the defender ahead of the 2022/23 campaign. Arsenal might need to invest in a defender amid rising uncertainties surrounding William Saliba’s future.

France international was considered one of the best young centre-backs in Europe when he joined the Blaugrana from Lyon in summer 2016. Umtiti initially justified the hype surrounding him and became a crucial figure for the Catalan giants.

But injuries have taken a toll on Samuel, who has gradually become an afterthought at Barcelona. The 28-year-old centre-back has featured only once this campaign while spending half of the campaign on the sidelines due to a toe injury.

And after falling to the bottom of the pecking order for defenders at Barcelona, the French defender could depart from the Catalan club in the summer transfer window, with the Gunners a possible destination.

The Gunners might have to invest in a centre-back for a third successive summer transfer window despite the fantastic displays of White and Gabriel this campaign. As the Spanish manager has brutally found out, strength in depth is a major issue for Arsenal, especially with Mavropanos set to depart from the London club permanently.

In addition, Saliba faces an uncertain future at Emirates Stadium, with Marseille keen on signing him permanently in the summer transfer window following a fantastic 2021/22 season by the French defender.