Arsenal could reportedly reprise their £53 million chase to land French defender Dayot Upamecano next summer, once his release clause is slashed.
As reported by The Sun, who have quoted suggestions by French publication L’Equipe, Arsenal are keeping tabs on the situation of Dayot Upamecano and could be back in the market for him next summer. The French centre-back, who was tailed by the Gunners in the window gone by, will see the release clause in RB Leipzig contract drop to £53 million next year.
Upamecano is a player who has been on the radar of top clubs ever since his days with Red Bull Salzburg. But, it is his transition to top-level German club football that has earned him even more admirers. The player, though, was blighted by a long-term knee injury that has restricted him to just six appearances in 2019.
Nevertheless, Upamecano remains a highly-rated centre-back, who, at 20, still has his best years well ahead of him. At the same time, the fact that he has shown leadership capabilities despite his nascent age would have endeared him to many-a-club. One such outfit are Arsenal, who have been the French defender’s long-term admirers.
In fact, the Gunners were hot on Upamecano’s tails this past summer, when they were desperate to bolster the heart of the defence following the acrimonious departure of Laurent Koscielny. But, after seeing two bids being knocked back by RB Leipzig, Arsenal turned their attention towards David Luiz, who completed a deadline day move from Chelsea.
Luiz, however, has struggled to transform the North Londoners’ fortunes at the back. With Sokratis also experiencing a dip in form, Arsenal appear to be in dire straits as far as defence is concerned, considering backup options Shkodran Mustafi, Rob Holding, Konstantinos Mavropanos and Calum Chambers either do not inspire much confidence or have been beset with injuries.
In such a scenario, it will hardly be a bad move for Arsenal to turn their attention back to French defender Upamecano over a possible move next summer. Even though compatriot William Saliba will begin his Arsenal journey next season, a distinct lack of quality means Arsenal could do with someone like Upamecano as well.
The Gunners are now set to be handed a massive boost in their pursuit of the 20-year-old, with French outlet L’Equipe (h/t The Sun) claiming that his buyout clause could be slashed to £53 million post the end of the season, which will be a steep fall on RB Leipzig’s valuation this past summer.
The catch is that Upamecano must not sign a new deal by the time next summer’s transfer window opens. In such a scenario, Arsenal will be waiting with bated breaths, with reports suggesting that Leipzig are working on a fresh contract for the French defender, which will do away with a release clause altogether.
It now remains to be seen if Arsenal are able to make a renewed approach for Upamecano next summer, which hinges on his valuation dropping down to £53 million to a great extent. Any move, though, is likely to depend on whether RB Leipzig are able to tie the French defender down to a new deal before next summer’s window opens.