Arsenal have joined north London rivals Tottenham in the battle to sign Bologna defender Takehiro Tomiyasu, according to reports in Italy.
Tomiyasu has impressed for Bologna in a variety of roles since joining them in 2019. Last season, he mainly played as a centre-back or a right-back, but did cover at left-back on a couple of occasions as well. Thanks to his versatility and ability, he is now being tipped to make the step up to a bigger club.
Such a scenario could lead him to the Premier League, where Tottenham are trying to sign him. Managing director Fabio Paratici knows all about the 22-year-old from his time in Serie A and wants to make a move. Tomiyasu is capable of playing in a back three, the system new coach Nuno Espirito Santo may employ.
Defence is an area that Spurs need to strengthen, as some of their current options could leave. They will thus need to replenish the ranks and Tomiyasu could help them in a number of ways.
A recent report revealed that their latest offer had fallen fractionally short of Bologna’s asking price. It seemed a compromise should be easy to find, but Tottenham may now come to regret their refusal to pay the full price.
According to Sky Sport Italia, arch-rivals Arsenal have launched their own efforts to sign the Japan international.
The Gunners are also undergoing something of a rebuild after missing out on European qualification. They need more depth in the full-back areas, especially if Hector Bellerin leaves. Meanwhile, the departure of David Luiz has opened up another spot in the squad for a centre-back.
Tomiyasu would therefore be a useful reinforcement for Mikel Arteta’s side if they can meet the €20m asking price.
Bologna are actively preparing for Tomiyasu’s departure and have signed centre-back Kevin Bonifazi to replace him. Now, they are waiting to receive an appropriate offer, which could arrive from either side of the north London divide.
Tottenham, Arsenal battling for Correa
Another Serie A talent who has found himself eyed by both north London rivals is Lazio attacker Joaquin Correa.
Alfredo Pedulla, writing for Gazzetta Dello Sport, has revealed that Paratici has made a move for the 26-year-old forward.
There were rumours last month that Arsenal had also submitted an offer for the Argentina international. Lazio are willing to sell him for the right price so they can fund more signings of their own for new boss Maurizio Sarri.
They want around £34m for Correa, which is more than what Arsenal offered. Thus, Tottenham could have the better chance in that transfer battle if they can raise an appropriate bid.