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Premier League • England

Arsenal transfer news: Twist in Nuno Tavares talks as player makes wish known to interested side

Arsenal left-back Nuno Tavares

Nuno Tavares could remain at Arsenal this summer amid claims the left-back no longer wants to join Marseille.

Tavares moved to the Emirates in July last year when the Gunners paid Benfica £7.2million to sign him. He joined to provide backup and competition for first-choice left-back Kieran Tierney.

Tavares went on to play in 28 matches last season, with 22 of those appearances coming in the Premier League. The defender scored his first Prem goal during a 3-1 victory over Manchester United in April.

However, it wasn’t the most successful campaign for Tavares as he put in several sub-par performances for Arsenal.

This prompted Mikel Arteta to use central midfielder Granit Xhaka on the left side of defence amid Tierney’s knee injury. That is despite him having Tavares fit and ready to play.

Clearly, the 22-year-old has stuff to work on before he can get Arteta’s full trust and make an impact in north London.

Rumours of an early exit for Tavares came about on July 11. With Arsenal looking to bring in Alex Grimaldo from Benfica, Tavares’ future at the club became unclear.

Marseille are interested in capturing Tavares and have taken part in discussions with Arsenal.

Second problem in Nuno Tavares, Marseille negotiations

Marseille want to sign the Portugal U21 international on a season-long loan with the option to buy. But as per Fabrizio Romano, Arsenal want it to be a straight loan. This is because they believe the full-back will come good once he gets more experience and moves away from the spotlight for a year.

This contrast in demands put Tavares’ move to France in doubt. And now there is another serious issue, according to L’Equipe (via Get French Football News).

The French newspaper claims Tavares has concerns about moving to Marseille. They do not reveal why he is feeling this way, but clearly the player does not want to feature at the Stade Velodrome right now.

Tavares has told Marseille of his wish to remain in Arteta’s squad and he now looks set to stay in England.

This is good news for Arsenal as it means they can keep a keen eye on his development. But Tavares is unlikely to make many first-team outings next season.

That’s because Oleksandr Zinchenko will soon arrive from Manchester City. The two Prem sides have agreed a £30m package for the versatile Ukrainian.

He is set to sign a four-year deal with Arsenal and will soon take part in a medical.

Zinchenko can operate at left-back, left midfield or central midfield. This means he will provide Tavares with even more competition for a starting spot.

It was bad enough that Tavares had Tierney in front of him in the pecking order. But with Zinchenko also in the squad, it’s hard to see how the Portuguese gets any minutes in big matches next season.

Meanwhile, a German journalist has given his take on a possible Arsenal move for Bayern Munich’s Leroy Sane.