Arsenal

Arsenal TT Roundup: Gunners want Denis Zakaria refusal option, Merih Demiral valued as Lucas Torreira’s agent speaks out

In this instalment of our TT Roundup, Football Transfer Tavern have gathered three of the biggest stories to have involved Arsenal recently and have provided our thoughts on the reports published.

Gunners eye condition on Xhaka deal

According to The Sun, Arsenal are willing to send Granit Xhaka back to former club Borussia Monchengladbach on the condition they can get first refusal on defensive midfielder Denis Zakaria.

Arsenal signed Xhaka from the German club in 2016, and with the Swiss international being frozen out of the team since being substituted in their October draw with Crystal Palace, it seems the Gunners are looking to gain from the situation.

Unai Emery’s side are yet to win since Xhaka last played for the team and had the captaincy removed in the aftermath.

Verdict

Arsenal’s interest in Zakaria likely predates the situation involving Xhaka, with links to the 23-year-old emerging in the week of Xhaka’s fateful substitution.

A move would be a like-for-like swap, and would also kill two birds with one stone should it be the case that Xhaka has no future at the club in spite of the interest in Zakaria.

You would imagine that involving Xhaka in any deal could bring the eventual price down if they were to bid for Zakaria, so you can see why Arsenal would seek first refusal should they need to source a replacement.

Arsenal linked with €35m Demiral move

Arsenal and Manchester United are among potential suitors for Juventus defender Merih Demiral, according to Corriere Torino.

A report claims (via Sport Witness) that both clubs watched the 21-year-old in action for Turkey in the recent international break, and while the likes of AC Milan have been put off by his €35m (£30m) asking price, that may not be the case for the Premier League duo.

It also suggests that a January switch could be on the cards with Demiral down the Juve pecking order and Maurizio Sarri not his biggest fan.

Verdict

There’s little surprise in Arsenal looking to bolster their defence given the start to the season they have had.

Though they will have youngster William Saliba re-joining the club in the summer – and considering they snapped up David Luiz for a mere £8m in August, there is little to suggest they will have the funds for such an outlay on another centre-back in the winter, should Demiral’s price tag be believed.

So on one hand, an approach may not be a surprise – but on the other, substantially adding to their yearly expenditure may seem slightly peculiar.

Agent refuses to rule out Torreira Serie A return

The agent of Lucas Torreira has been quoted in Calcio Mercato as refusing to rule out a return to Italy’s top flight for the Uruguayan.

Torreira made his name in Italy while playing for Pescara and Sampdoria, and agent Pablo Bentancur spoke of interest from elsewhere as question marks remain over his Gunners future.

Bentancur also revealed the 23-year-old is ‘no longer at ease’ since his role in the Arsenal squad was altered – blaming that for the stop-start nature of his season so far.

Verdict

Reports of Torreira being unhappy at Arsenal are nothing new, though these comments from his agent potentially add some reason as to why they may have come to light.

Torreira’s starting place is not as assured as it once was, with the midfielder starting just four times in the league so far this season.

With another Copa America campaign on the horizon, there may be added motivation to get into the starting XI, but it seems opportunities to do so are being passed up by his manager at present.

Should Arsenal sell Lucas Torreira?

Yes

Yes

No

No

Arsenal fans, should Torreira start more games – and should the club bid for Demiral? Let us know in the comments below!

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Arsenal TT Roundup: Gunners want Denis Zakaria refusal option, Merih Demiral valued as Lucas Torreira’s agent speaks out
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