Arsenal handed £35m transfer blow as Juventus make promise to try and kill Gunners hopes



Posted Friday, March 06, 2020 by Express.co.uk

Arsenal's hopes of landing one of their transfer targets this summer have hit a roadblock because of Juventus.

Arsenal handed £35m transfer blow as Juventus make promise to try and kill Gunners hopes
Arsenal handed £35m transfer blow as Juventus make promise to try and kill Gunners hopes (Image: GETTY)

Arsenal lead the race to sign Merih Demiral from Juventus in the summer - but the Italian outfit are determined to keep hold of the promising young centre-back, according to reports. Demiral only moved to the Serie A champions a year ago from Sassuolo for £15million.

Demiral is currently sidelined by injury having made seven appearances for Juve this term, last featuring against Roma in Serie A in January when he scored the opening goal after a single minute.

The 22-year-old ruptured the anterior cruciate ligament in his left knee just 19 minutes into that match, however, and had to undergo knee surgery soon after.

Despite that, Calciomercato claim that Arsenal are keen on the Turkey international as they look to make changes to their back-line, which has leaked 51 goals in only 40 games across all competitions.

Leicester sought to sign Demiral in the January window but called of their pursuit after his injury, with reports having claimed that they were ready to submit a £25m bid for the defender.

Arsenal handed £35m transfer blow as Juventus make promise to try and kill Gunners hopes
Arsenal handed £35m transfer blow as Juventus make promise to try and kill Gunners hopes (Image: GETTY)

Calciomercato claim Leicester had an approach rejected by Juve because the Old Lady see the player as key to their long-term future.

They claim that Juve have no intention to sell and that as Maurizio Sarri changes the look of his side, Demiral will be a key cog of their new-look team.

The report adds that the Juve hierarchy have promised him that he has a future at the Allianz Stadium and told him they do not want to sell him.

It is added that even a bid of £35m (€40m) would not be enough to prise Demiral away from Turin, which will be a blow to Arsenal, .

Arteta seemingly identified the Turkish centre-half as an affordable and long-term option to improve the Gunners’ ailing back-line.

While under him, the north London outfit have kept six clean sheets in 14 games, Arsenal’s defensive issues were exposed in their Europa League exit at the hands of Olympiakos last week.

And with two of Arteta’s main centre-back options, David Luiz and Sokratis Papastathopoulos, aged 32 and 31 respectively, the Spaniard is expected to address the centre of defence in the summer window.

Another centre-back linked with Arsenal is Manchester City’s John Stones, with 90min.com claiming the Premier League champions are willing to offload the former Everton man this summer.

Pep Guardiola wants to restructure his own defence in the next window and Stones and Nicolas Otamendi are two potential casualties as he looks to free up room for new additions.

Arsenal handed £35m transfer blow as Juventus make promise to try and kill Gunners hopes
Arsenal handed £35m transfer blow as Juventus make promise to try and kill Gunners hopes (Image: GETTY)

City, however, are said to want the full £50million they paid for the England international back in 2016 if Arteta seeks a reunion.

The 37-year-old knows Stones well having been Guardiola’s assistant for three years at the Etihad, although would have to commit a major chunk of the club’s finances to sign him.

Arteta had to dismiss speculation in the recent winter window that he was set to launch a midseason move for Stones.

"No truth at all,” he said when asked whether Arsenal could try to sign the 25-year-old.

"John is a player that I really like and I followed. We signed him when I was at Manchester City and I worked with him for many years and know him well.

"When I look at centre-backs he has many attributes that I like from one, but we’re not interested.”



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