Arsenal remain hopeful of striking a deal to sell Lucas Torreira to Atletico Madrid – and could yet land Thomas Partey in exchange.
The Uruguay star is expected to move on before the window shuts early next month, after falling out of favour with Mikel Arteta.
The defensive midfielder has been left out of their first two matchday squads this season. As such, he seems destined to move on.
Torreira has been tipped to return to Serie A all summer. He was the subject of transfer talks with Torino last week until the deal collapsed over the asking price.
The Gunners are said to be seeking €24m for the tigerish midfielder – but may have found a buyer in Atletico Madrid.
According to Mundo Deportivo, Atleti boss Diego Simeone is ‘desperate’ to work with Torreira. As per the report, the Argentine believes his fellow South American would be an astute addition to their ranks.
Furthermore, they claim Simeone has phoned Torreira to ‘communicate the importance of his place’ in the Atletico side.
In addition, the article – translated by Sport Witness – claims the Uruguayan is crazy on the idea of moving to Spain. As such, rival interest from Fiorentina has been cast aside.
It’s also claimed there is “optimism” in Torreira’s camp a move can be agreed.
The possible transfer rekindles Arsenal’s hopes of a swap deal for Thomas Partey. The Gunners have long been on his trail but have struggled to match his €50m exit clause.
While Atletico won’t sell for less, the sale of Torreira would revitalise their hopes for Partey and lower the Gunners’ outlay.
Meanwhile, AS have discussed Atletico’s interest in Torreira further and state he is ‘desperate’ to get away from Arteta.
The Gunners boss, for his part, is said to be keeping an open mind about new arrivals.
Speaking after Saturday’s narrow win over West Ham, he admitted much could depend on potential exits first.
“Well, depending on what happens with some other players,” Arteta said. “As I say again, we are open to discussions, the market can surprise us.
“[Teams] can come for any of our players in different positions and we have to react, like it happened with Emi [Martinez]. So let’s see what happens…”
Bid comes in for Mustafi
Shkodran Mustafi could have played his last game for Arsenal, with Lazio reportedly weighing up a bid for the player.
Mustafi has not lived up to expectations at the Emirates Stadium since joining from Valencia in 2016. The arrival of Gabriel Magalhaes and return of William Saliba from a loan spell have pushed him further down the pecking order.
The German defender is now in the final year of his contract, and will not play until October at the earliest due to injury.
Mustafi’s situation has now made him an ideal target for Lazio, who are in the market for a new defender. The Biancocelesti hope to bolster their squad for a campaign in which they will also compete in the Champions League.
According to reports in Italy, Lazio are readying an approach after he emerged as a top target.