Arsenal appear close to making their first major sale of the summer.
According to reliable AS Roma journalist, John Solano, Arsenal are ‘very close’ to an agreement with AS Roma over the transfer of midfielder Granit Xhaka.
It seems certain that Xhaka, who turns 29 in September, will leave Arsenal this summer. The Gunners appear ready to move on from their midfield stalwart and former captain. Arsenal are likely to want to reduce their age profile in the midfield this summer, with Thomas Partey the senior midfielder, turning 28 next week.
The Gunners have been linked with a double swoop for two Norwegian midfielders in Sander Berge (23) and Martin Odegaard (22). There have also been reports recently that Arsenal are targeting 24-year-old Wolves midfielder Ruben Neves.
All signs point to Xhaka’s exit at this stage and at a new younger midfield option coming in to replace him. It makes sense to look for a younger profile of midfielder given this is the opportunity for the club to rebuild.
Solano doesn’t name a price for Xhaka, but it has been widely reported that Arsenal were hoping to fetch a figure in the region of £20million for Granit.
Xhaka divides opinion, but there is no doubting that he was one of Arsenal’s brighter players in the 2020/21 campaign and Arsenal will need to ensure they invest in a good replacement in order to take steps forward next season.
Granit racked up more than 150 appearances for Arsenal since joining in 2016 and was a regular in the team for all of Arsene Wenger, Unai Emery and most recently Mikel Arteta. He has also been capped nearly 100 times for his country.