Arsenal are inching closer to the capture of French youngster William Saliba after submitting an improved offer of £30 million for the Saint-Etienne defender.
Arsenal have been chasing central defenders all summer long and specifically Saint-Etienne youngster William Saliba. Their chase could be nearing conclusion as The Sun reports of a possible new bid for the defender. According to the paper, Arsenal have submitted an improved offer of £30 million, something that could probably seal the deal.
Saliba’s name must be now familiar within the Arsenal fanbase as the club have chased his signature the entire summer so far. The Gunners have thus far failed to reach any proper agreement with French side Saint-Eteinne for Saliba in terms of a transfer fee, ensuring the chase has dragged on.
Despite reportedly reaching a personal agreement with Saliba in recent weeks, Arsenal have failed to close the deal sooner. However, with their reported new offer to Saint-Etienne, they could finally see the light at the end of the tunnel in this saga.
Additionally, there were other complications attached to the deal owing to Saint-Etienne’s demands with the transfer. The French club have been adamant about keeping Saliba at the club for one more season. This was irrespective of agreeing to a transfer to any club. Arsenal were initially unwilling to part with money as well as let the player stay on for another season, but have agreed to do so since.
The Gunners reportedly are okay with allowing the 19-year-old develop further at the French side as they were willing to sanction a loan deal as soon as signing him. But as Arsenal left it late to decide rivals were gathering their interest in the defender. Manchester City were one of the prominent sides to enter the race early on, but have since shifted their interest in acquiring a more established player in Harry Maguire.
Moreover, North London rivals Tottenham were hoping to hijack the deal by offering £30 million when Arsenal were offering less. However, Saliba is more inclined towards signing for Arsenal and reportedly prefers a switch to the Emirates.
However, now that Arsenal are offering a reported £30 million, it falls well in the bracket of Saint-Etienne’s demands. The French side might now finally consider sanctioning the sale of the player, but the chances are high they might keep him for another year at the club albeit on loan from Arsenal.
As for Saliba, it is an excellent opportunity to secure his future. With him set to spend another year in France, he could develop his game even further and come back to the Emirates as a more refined player. For Arsenal, this is a good deal, although they are spending big money on a player only to loan him back immediately. In all, it does look like a good investment for the future of the Gunners’ defence.