Sunday, October 2, 2022

Lucas Torreira departs – Spanish winger linked

Morning all.

The squad trimming continues after Lucas Torreira’s move to Galatasaray was made official last night. He said:

“It has always been my dream to play for … where am I? What? Turkey?!

“Anyway, I was saying it’s been a lifelong ambition to put on the incredible colours of Fenerb … what? … Besikt- … oh … Galatasaray.

“As their famous motto says, ‘Live long and prosper!'”

Arsenal will receive something in the region of €6m for the 26 year old, which makes me wonder about the Fiorentina thing a bit. We had agreed €15m but then they cut that in half, reportedly because of the demands of Torreira’s agent. We then sell him for €1m less than the €7m to Galatasaray. I suppose it’s a point of principle, when someone reneges on an agreement they can stick it up their bum, and I guess you can’t bank on them acting in good faith in the future.

So far, my totting up of incoming cash for Lucas Torreira and Bernd Leno, plus Matteo Guendouzi and Dinos Mavropanos (deals that were arranged last year with their loans) amounts to around £20m. A way to go yet, but I’m not sure whose departure might bring anything that will substantially increase that.

Elsewhere, there are reports that Hector Bellerin’s agent will be meeting with the club this week to try and sort out his situation. It’s said Hector will forgo any salary he’s owed by the club in order to make it happen, and given he’s on around £100,000 a week that’s a substantial amount of money. It’s more than we got from Fulham for Bernd Leno!

He wants to go back to Real Betis, there isn’t a bidding war or anything for him, and at this point it would just be best for everyone that move could be facilitated. To be fair to the player, giving up the salary you are entitled to goes beyond what most players would do, so let’s see how this one goes.

Pablo Mari is set for Hellas Verona, according to reports, the kind of move that essentially guarantees I will never see him kick a football again in my life.

I wonder too about Ainsley Maitland-Niles. He didn’t even make the 9 man subs bench on Friday night, and his chances of doing so are going to be even slimmer when we get Takehiro Tomiyasu, Emile Smith Rowe and Fabio Vieira back to full fitness. Maybe there’s the chance of some playing time in the Europa League group stages, but at this point in his career, that’s not enough.

Having made the England squad not that long ago, it’s a bit strange how there hasn’t even been a sniff of a rumour around him this summer. I know his stock has fallen since, but he’s a versatile English player, still only 24, and you’d have thought there’d be some interest from within the Premier League, but so far … nothing. I think I said on here (or maybe on the Arsecast) that he’d be the most Everton signing I could possibly think of during this transfer window, but we’ll just have to wait and see if anything happens.

As for incoming business, AS in Spain report Arsenal interest in Villarreal’s Yeremy Pino. He plays on the right wing, so on that basis it makes some sense given we had solid interest in Raphinha, but a reported buyout clause of €80m seems steep. Of course, that clause doesn’t mean he can’t be sold for less, and Villarreal are apparently in need of cash to bring in new players.

So far this summer they haven’t added a single player to a squad which finished 7th in La Liga last season, missing out on Europa League to play in the Europa Conference League instead. Maybe we’ll test their mettle with a bid but there are complications in that Liverpool are also sniffing around, and we’ve got players like Reiss Nelson and Nicolas Pepe to try and move on before we bring anyone else in.

Finally for today, Brooke Norton-Cuffy has signed a new contract with the club, and hopefully after his eye-catching loan spell last season we’ve got something lined up for him again this time around. Hopefully regular playing time with a Championship club will help continue his development.

Right, let’s leave it there. To play us out … what does that mean ‘to play us out?’ … goddamit, I’ll do it live … here’s one for all you Magpie Facts Fans.

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