Chris Willock is understood to be reaching the end of his contract with the Gunners ahead of next month and will reportedly join Benfica.
According to a report by The Mirror, 19-year-old Chris Willock is expected to join Portuguese giants Benfica since his contract with Arsenal will end before next month. The deal is understood to be long-term and the report also states that Willock traveled to Portugal earlier to discuss the terms and conditions.
Despite recording only two appearances for the Gunners in the EFL Cup last season, Willock is still quite a talented forward. He managed to progress through the ranks in the North London club but will out of contract at the end of June and an offer from Benfica might seem like a good exit route for the young forward.
He did not receive as many opportunities playing for Arsenal even though he has been with them since 2003. Joining Benfica is likely to provide Willock with a better amount of playing time and opportunities since he is a strong talent that can be developed further.
The move may come as good news for Willock but with Alexis Sanchez’s uncertain future with Arsenal, it does seem risky for Arsene Wenger to let go of a young player who has a lot of potential. The Gunners are known for being capable of nurturing and developing fresh talent and Willock could’ve been no different had he stayed back.
The youngster is skillful and an intelligent passer and is usually deployed on the left wing. He does have a touch of versatility in him since he can also be used centrally. In fact, Willock has been enjoying a solid reputation of being one of Arsenal’s brightest young talents.
Several Premier League clubs like Everton, Southampton and Bournemouth were believed to be keen on signing Willock, but now it seems like Benfica have a better chance since Arsenal are likely to let him join a club which is not a part of the same league.
Even if Willock was keen to remain at the Emirates Stadium, playing regular football might have been a tough ordeal considering how Wenger is determined to sign Kylian Mbappe and Thomas Lemar from AS Monaco before the end of this transfer window, and if that happens, he would have to kiss his chances of first-team football goodbye.