Arsenal have finalised a big contract offer for Inter Milan striker Lautaro Martinez following their dismal opening day loss to Brentford, a report has claimed.
The Gunners faced the Premier League newcomers in the season’s curtain raiser on Friday evening. It was a nightmare start for manager Mikel Arteta, who faces high expectations for the campaign from the club’s supporters. His side were defeated 2-0 by the Bees.
And to add insult to injury, marquee signing Ben White endured a tough time on his debut as he struggled to contain the Brentford attack.
The disappointing opener has seemingly prompted the club to accelerate their business in the transfer market.
With the window set to close in a little over two weeks, they have readied a hefty deal to put in front of 23-year-old Martinez.
That’s according to Sportmediaset, who claim he is the Gunners’ main target to secure before the close of play on deadline day.
The Italian outlet report they are willing to make him the best paid player at the club with a weekly wage of nearly £280k.
This was on the cards prior to the Brentford defeat. But their lacklustre performance has supposedly raised urgency in Mikel Arteta and Edu’s approach.
Arsenal’s north London rivals Tottenham are also pursuing the Argentina international.
They want to partner Martinez with talisman Harry Kane. That is despite the significant interest in the England captain from Manchester City.
Both will have a fight on their hands to get a deal done, though. The estimated salary to be offered by Arsenal would more than triple the striker’s current wages in Milan.
But his agent has for a long time reiterated he wants to stay put in Serie A. And this latest report states this too.
Despite the massively enticing offer, his agent said: “He [Martinez] loves Inter, he won’t start.”
He also suggested talks about a contract renewal would begin soon. However, the same stance was set on Romelu Lukaku before a significant offer from Chelsea arrived.
Martinez one of two huge targets
Meanwhile, Arsenal are closing on the signing of Martin Odegaard following a major development in the transfer saga.
After he spent the second half of last season on loan at Arsenal, Odegaard has been a top target at the Emirates Stadium.
He made a positive impression during his short stay in north London. As such, they want to make his association with the club long-term. However, prising him away from parent club Madrid has been difficult so far.
However, those hopes took a significant upturn on Saturday when two factors tipped the scales in Arsenal’s favour…