Premier League • England

Game over for Arsenal star Arteta is finished with, as two huge clues point to likely next club

Arsenal stars Emile Smith Rowe and Nuno Tavares

An Arsenal star who’s barely featured for the club in recent seasons is no longer in Mikel Arteta’s plans, and two huge clues are pointing to who he’ll join this summer.

The vast bulk of signings made in the Arteta era have been roaring successes at the Emirates. However, a rare miss in the sea of hits is full-back Nuno Tavares.

The Portuguese left-back cost £8m when signed Benfica in the summer window of 2021. Tavares made 28 appearances in his first season with the Gunners, though his displays left a lot to be desired from a defensive standpoint.

Tavares was subsequently loaned out to Marseille for the 2022/23 campaign where he excelled while deployed in a more advanced wing-back role. Tavares bagged six league goals for Marseille who were managed by Igor Tudor at the time.

Upon returning to Arsenal, Tavares was again turfed out on loan. On the back of signing Oleksandr Zinchenko and Jurrien Timber a year later, Tavares would’ve been way down the pecking order if staying at Arsenal.

Tavares joined Nottingham Forest on a season-long loan. Forest’s deal also contains an option to buy worth £12m.

However, Tavares has featured just seven times in the Premier League under Steve Cooper and latterly Nuno Espirito Santo.

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Forest to ignore buy option; reunion in Italy awaits?

According to a report from Corriere dello Sport, Forest are highly unlikely to trigger their option. Tavares is thus in line to return to Arsenal where the pressure will to sell will be on. Indeed, Tavares’ Gunners deal expires at the end of next season.

Furthermore, the report stated the full-back is ‘not in the plans’ of his parent club.

As such, a permanent exit will be explored and it’s suggested a move to Lazio could be on the cards.

Explaining why, it’s highlighted Lazio are now managed by Igor Tudor. As previously mentioned, he is the manager who got the best out of Tavares at Marseille.

Furthermore, Corriere dello Sport state Lazio actually have long-standing interest in Tavares having attempted to sign him back in 2021. Unfortunately for Lazio, Arsenal were also in the mix.

But fast forward to the present day and Tavares’ stint at Arsenal clearly hasn’t worked out.

With a summer exit expected, Lazio may get the chance to sign Tavares three years after their first attempt.

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