Arsenal are reportedly eyeing a summer move for Otavio, who is unwilling to extend his contract at FC Porto.
Italian journalist Nicolo Schira has offered an interesting update about Otavio as the FC Porto star has vowed not to extend his contract at the club. His current deal with the Portuguese giants expires at the end of the season, meaning he will be available as a free agent in the summer. And it has reportedly put Arsenal on red alert.
It is believed that the Gunners are interested in signing Otavio as a free agent in the summer, though they could face stiff competition from Serie A giants AS Roma. The Giallorossi, in fact, are keen on securing his services as they look to add competition for former Arsenal playmaker Henrikh Mkhitaryan.
As for Arsenal themselves, it appears obvious that Otavio is being eyed as a potential replacement for Mesut Ozil. The German playmaker’s contract also expired in the summer, although we may see him depart the Emirates in the ongoing transfer window. He has most recently been linked with a move to Fenerbahce.
Although the Gunners have identified the likes of Julian Brandt and Emiliano Buendia as potential replacement options, Otavio could be an exciting alternative. The 25-year-old has been a key member of the FC Porto attack for a few years now, notably mustering 165 competitive appearances. He has registered a total of 43 assists, four of which have come in the ongoing campaign.
What makes Otavio such an appealing target for Mikel Arteta is his versatility. Although an attacking midfielder by trade, the Brazilian can operate out wide, which would make him a potential upgrade over someone like Willian. In addition, the Porto playmaker can work hard and often seeks to complete his defensive duties.
It bodes well for Arteta, who seeks to hold discipline and consistency at the highest regard. Otavio, in that regard, should effortlessly slot into the Arsenal manager’s plans, although it remains unlikely that he will emerge as the tailor-made replacement for someone like Ozil.
It is also fair to point out that the north London giants may also find it difficult to beat Roma in pursuit of the 25-year-old, whose Portuguese roots would make him much more welcome under the leadership of Paulo Fonseca. However, it remains to be seen if Arsenal are able to swoop him away to the Emirates instead.