Ever Banega’s agent is reportedly in London to begin talks with Arsenal ahead of a potential transfer move, as Unai Emery looks to continue his squad overhaul at the Emirates.
Unai Emery will be well aware of the attributes Banega can bring to north London having worked with him at both Valencia and Sevilla during his managerial stints at the respective clubs, and believes him perfect to fill the void left by Jack Wilshere and Santi Cazorla’s departures.
Gazzetta dello Sport (via Metro) are reporting that Marcelo Simonian, Banega’s agent, has travelled to London and is set to hold talks with the Arsenal transfer committee on Thursday evening, but a deal is far from close.
The Argentine playmaker left Seville for Inter in 2016, but returned to the Spanish club last summer after failing to impress at San Siro.
Sevilla are reluctant to allow Banega to leave for the second time in quick succession as their fan favourite remains integral to plans for progression in La Liga next season.
But Los Rojiblancos may struggle to keep hold of Banega should Arsenal meet his release clause of €20m, with the Gunners able to offer the Argentina international higher wages and a chance to play under a manager who has proven already his ability to maximise his potential.
Banega was part of Emery’s Sevilla team that won consecutive Europa League trophies in 2015 and 2016, and has played some of his best football under the Arsenal boss. The chance to reunite with the Spaniard in the Premier League may prove too tempting.
Banega would join a much changed Arsenal side for the 2018/19 campaign. The Gunners have already secured the services of Stefan Lichtsteiner and Bernd Leno this summer, but their transfer business is not yet complete.
A fee for deep-lying midfielder Lucas Torreira has reportedly already been agreed, while rumours of Sokratis Papastathopoulos to Arsenal refuse to go away.