Player misses training as Arsenal try to thrash out deal, medical already done

By on January 27, 2020

It’s been a busy few hours regarding Arsenal’s proposed move to sign Flamengo centre-back Pablo Mari as it’s been on, then off, and now it looks like it could be back on again.

It appeared to be a ‘done deal’ when Mari was spotted arriving at Heathrow Airport on Saturday afternoon along with Arsenal technical director Edu. Most reports said it would be an initial loan until the end of the season with Arsenal having an option to make the deal permanent in the summer.

The Daily Mail claim the fee would be £7.5m and a medical was successfully undertaken over the weekend so it looked as though everything was in place for Arsenal to wrap-up their first signing of the winter window.

Then came the bombshell. The Daily Mail reported on Monday morning that the deal was on the verge of collapse as a ‘disappointed’ Mari had flown back to Brazil after there was a late hitch in negotiations. ESPN also report that the deal has all-but collapsed.

Some papers came out and said talks were still progressing well but The Sun quoted an anonymous Flamengo director as saying Arsenal had tried to change the terms of the deal at the last minute.

The apparent director is quoted by The Sun as saying:

“I already spoke with Pablo Mari. We expect him at Ninho do Urubu this afternoon [for pre season training]. We had agreed to sell him for a fee, he arrived in London, Arsenal changed [the terms]. Flamengo is a serious club.”

Mari was expected to report back with Flamengo for training today but in another twist, Brazilian outlet UOL claims the defender hasn’t joined up with his team mates as the 26-year-old is still trying to push through a move to Arsenal.

The report says talks are continuing between the two clubs and the sticking point seems to be that Arsenal want a simple loan deal while Flamengo are keen for Mari to be sold in a permanent deal this month.

We’ll have to wait and see how things progress but it would be madness to let Mari slip away at this stage. We desperately need defensive reinforcements and the club clearly want him, so let’s get this deal done asap.

Only Arsenal could bring a player over from Brazil, put him in front of cameras with our technical director at the airport, do a medical and then still manage to derail the deal!