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Arsenal transfer news: Emery plotting moves to snap-up £88m duo

By on May 22, 2019

The summer window is open so there is plenty of gossip flying around and today I’ll be bringing you details of Arsenal’s reported interest in Valencia goalkeeper Neto and Espanyol defender Mario Hermoso.

Let’s start with Neto and the Daily Mail are carrying a report from Marca that claims Arsenal have identified the Valencia stopper as a potential replacement for Petr Cech – who will leave the club when his contract expires next month.

The Spanish publication says Emery is a fan of the Brazilian international after watching him star for Valencia since joining the club in 2017 and Plaza Deportiva even claim we’ve already held initial talks with his representatives.

However, a deal may be difficult as Neto may not be keen on being regarded as back-up to Leno while Marca suggest his buy-out clause is set at £70m – which is likely to be a stumbling block if Valencia don’t accept a much lower deal.

Emery will have a tight budget to work from this summer – especially if we miss out on the Champions League – so there is no way Arsenal will pay that kind of money for a No.2.

We have David Ospina coming back from loan at Napoli this summer but it doesn’t look like he has a future at Arsenal so I expect him to find another club while Emi Martinez has never been able to establish himself at the Emirates.

A replacement for Cech is therefore needed but I don’t see Neto as being a realistic target unless Valencia are ready to strike a deal – which seems unlikely given his importance to their team and the fact they’ll be back in the Champions League next season.

Arsenal are also expected to be in the market for a new centre-back as Shkodran Mustafi is a walking disaster and Laurent Koscielny will turn 34 in September so we need to bring in at least one new defender this summer.

We’ve been linked with a number of players in recent weeks but The Sun are citing reports from Spain that claim we’re now showing a keen interest in signing Espanyol star Mario Hermoso.

The Sun quote Sport as saying that Hermoso’s release clause is set at £35m but Espanyol are willing to cash-in if £18m is put on the table so this is a deal that is very-much in Arsenal’s price-range.

The 23-year-old has been excellent for Espanyol this season and he’s already broken into the Spanish national team set-up with 2 caps to his name so he could prove to be a shrewd piece of business.

However, there are two problems. Firstly, the report says Arsenal will face stiff competition from PSG and Bayern Munich for his signature. Secondly, Real Madrid inserted a £6m buy-back clause into the deal that saw Hermoso join Espanyol two years ago.

Even if the Bernabeu giants don’t want to re-sign him, they could simply activate the buy-back clause and re-sell Hermoso at a huge profit which may price Arsenal out of the race if the likes of PSG and Bayern are involved.

Let’s see how things go but it looks like we’ll have to wait and see what Madrid’s plans are before we can get too excited at the thought of Hermoso joining Arsenal any time soon.

I’m sure there will be lot’s more transfer gossip tomorrow, so keep an eye out for more updates on Arsenal Station….

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