Premier League • England

Arsenal transfer news: Lucas Torreira delays exit plan as prime suitors weigh up Chelsea alternative

Lucas Torreira, Fiorentina v Juventus May 2022

Lucas Torreira has put his proposed move to Galatasaray from Arsenal on hold, according to reports – which may have prompted the Turkish side to look at a Chelsea player instead.

Reports in the Italian media recently claimed Torreira was close to joining Galatasaray. The midfielder spent last season on loan in Serie A with Fiorentina, but a permanent deal collapsed.

Torreira does not feature prominently in Mikel Arteta’s plans for Arsenal. What’s more, he only has one year remaining on his contract at the Emirates Stadium. Hence, a departure in any direction seems to make sense.

Galatasaray were said to have reached an agreement with Torreira’s entourage over personal terms. However, there are now doubts as to whether the player will actually accept the move.

According to Spanish outlet Deporte Valenciano, Torreira is stalling on a move to Galatasaray. His preference would instead to be to sign for Valencia.

Torreira previously spent a season on loan in La Liga with Atletico Madrid, where he was a fringe member of a title-winning squad.

Now, Torreira is thinking of joining Valencia, who want to find a midfielder suitable for Gennaro Gattuso.

However, he may be beyond their means yet. Valencia cannot afford the kind of money Arsenal would want for Torreira, nor what Galatasaray could give him as a salary.

Chelsea misfit an alternative to Lucas Torreira

Still, Valencia’s interest seems to have caused enough concern for Galatasaray to turn to alternatives. Elsewhere, Tuttomercatoweb are claiming that the Super Lig side are interested in Tiemoue Bakayoko.

Bakayoko is currently in the middle of a two-year loan at AC Milan from Chelsea. He never lived up to expectations at his parent club.

However, despite a previous loan spell with Milan going well, his return to San Siro has not been as memorable. The Serie A champions do not want to keep him permanently, even though they would be obliged to if they use him in 15 games this season.

Amid that risk, Milan are hoping that Bakayoko can find a new club ahead of schedule. And Tuttomercatoweb relay that Galatasaray have made contact with the former Monaco man.

Next, there could be contact with Chelsea to explore an interruption of his deal with Milan.

If that happens, it could be another factor that would push Lucas Torreira towards Valencia. Of course, it still depends on whether Los Che can afford the deal.

Torreira and Bakayoko are both good players for whom it hasn’t quite worked out in English football. Despite being owned by London rivals, their exit paths could be intertwined.

Coincidentally, Bakayoko was also briefly linked with Valencia after they appointed Gattuso – his former boss at Milan.

But instead, maybe there could be a chance of Torreira and Bakayoko linking up at Galatasaray. Most likely, though, it seems a choice between one or the other for each club.

Galatasaray move interesting for either player despite previous potential

Neither Galatasaray nor Valencia have European football on offer next season. Torreira and Bakayoko have both played at a higher level in the past.

However, they each need to resurrect their careers, at 26 and 27 years of age respectively.

It is understandable why Torreira may want to wait for Valencia. He has experience in La Liga before and would therefore get to continue in one of Europe’s top five leagues.

However, the Galatasaray project could be interesting. They are a big club who need to rebuild. Several Turkish clubs have picked up players of pedigree once their stars have faded.

Hence, they could be sensing opportunities with Torreira and Bakayoko. It would be interesting to see how either would get on.

They are good enough to return to a league of higher stature in the future and still have some time on their side. For now, though, such a move could be a necessary step.

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