Bianconeri and Los Rojiblancos have opened negotiations to sign Gunners striker Alexandre Lacazette this summer, despite comments from Mikel Arteta. Arteta spoke in a recent press conference of the importance of offering France international a new deal days after contracts had been arranged for Gabriel Martinelli and Bukayo Saka.
It seems as though the Spanish tactician is keen to keep Alexandre despite a difficult campaign in which he has just managed 10 goals in all tournaments. His current £182,000-a-week deals end in 2022.
In a bid to avoid sagas such as Alexis Sanchez, Aaron Ramsey or Mesut Ozil, Arteta has urged the London club board to hand Lacazette a new contract: “We have to have a chat about the next step with him.” But it might not even get to that stage.
Lacazette may be about to have his head turned, with Old Lady and La Liga giants contacting the footballer. Both clubs are open to a swap deal, with Thomas Partey a possible inclusion.
Gunners, as per many reports, will struggle to afford Ghana international’s release clause which is in the region of £45m. A player-plus-cash deal, then, makes complete sense and if it means losing the French striker so be it.
Arsenal are hardly lacking upfront. Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang looks increasingly likely as though he will stay, while Eddie Nketiah and Gabriel Martinelli are both tied down to long-term deals. If La Liga giants include Thomas in a deal for Alexandre possibly as a straight swap, then Gunners have got to rubber-stamp a move.