Transfer update: Messi close to decision as Arsenal eye Neves
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As Euro 2020 finally concludes, Arsenal technical director Edu can now begin to negotiate deals for a number of stars who were away on international duty.
It is expected to be a summer of key changes both in terms of arrivals and departures at Arsenal as boss Mikel Arteta tries to restore the Gunners to their former glories.
Following their second successive eighth-place Premier League finish, the pressure is firmly on Arteta to improve before his job becomes untenable.
Having won the FA Cup in his opening six months in charge, hopes were high for the Spaniard among the Arsenal faithful but things have not gone to plan since.
However, should Arteta, alongside Edu, get their transfer dealings right, there may be a route back to the Champions League for the Gunners.
Next season will mark the first campaign that Arsenal have gone without European Competition in 25 years, which could in turn making attracting players to the Emirates significantly harder.
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With that being said, there are still a number of international stars that could be enticed to North London this window.
Arsenal’s pursuit of England star Ben White is well documented, with the Brighton & Hove Albion central defender highly thought of by Arteta, who is looking to bolster his central defensive options as William Saliba is set to embark on his third loan spell away from the club.
Graham Potter’s side reportedly want around £55m for one of their most prized assets, the 23-year-old also attracting interest from the likes of Manchester City and Everton.
White is rumoured to be most keen on a move to the Emirates and now that England’s Euro 2020 journey is over, Arsenal could mount a move for the star.
Should a deal for White fail to materialise, Arsenal have identified another central defender they could sign instead.
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Denmark’s Joachim Andersen spent last season gaining Premier League experience on loan at relegated outfit Fulham, on loan from Lyon.
Andersen was a rare bright light in an otherwise dreary campaign for the Cottagers, but only played a bit-part role for the Danes at Euro 2020, featuring just three times, all from the coming from the substitutes bench.
Manuel Locatelli’s Euro campaign ended in glory as Italy beat Gareth Southgate’s Three Lions side on penalties, the midfielder coming on as a substitute during the dramatic victory.
Now that the trophy has been secured, Locatelli’s focus is likely to shift back to his club future, with much of his tournament dominated by speculation surrounding where he will play his football next season.
Currently of Serie A outfit Sassuolo, Juventus are thought to be front-runners, though Arsenal’s interest is also public record.
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The Gunners are unlikely to be Locatelli’s first choice given his status as a boyhood Juventus fan, but should the Italian giants be unable to stump up the required funds, Arsenal will be waiting in the wings.
Switzerland enjoyed an impressive Euro 2020 campaign, knocking out tournament favourites France at the round of 16 stage.
Denis Zakaria played just twice, but could still be of interest to Arsenal who may need further reinforcements in defensive midfield should Granit Xhaka depart.
Xhaka has long been linked with a move to AS Roma and Arteta is thought to rate Zakaria, his international teammate, highly.
Currently of Borussia Monchengladbach, the midfielder could be tempted by a move to the Premier League, having long had suitors in England despite only being 24 years of age.
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