According to the Guardian, Arsenal are pursuing a deal to sign James Maddison from Leicester City this summer. The player is also open to a move to the Emirates, despite the Foxes finishing above the Gunners in the last two seasons.
The summer transfer window so far has been busy and bright for the Gunners, they have made some good signings but apparently, Mikel Arteta isn’t done yet. He wants James Maddison at the club and he is being prioritised above all other options.
However, Arsenal are not alone in the race as another London club is keeping close tabs on the player. But the player is only considering a move to the Emirates. A source close to the Leicester City player has told Football.london that the 24-year old is at the top of Arsenal’s wishlist in this summer transfer window.
The reason this deal is not catching its pace is that both the clubs want the best deals in their interest. The price tag of £60 million seems too hefty for the Gunners at the moment, having signed Ben White for £50 million, while Leicester City are sticking to their asking price.
To sweeten the deal, Arsenal prepared a player plus cash offer for the Foxes, with the likes of Joe Willock, Eddie Nketiah and Maitland-Niles being touted as the players that were included in the deal. Although fresh reports claim that Joe Willock was offered as part of the swap deal.
— Mirror Football (@MirrorFootball) August 5, 2021
However, according to recent reports from the Mirror, Leicester City have knocked back the player plus cash deal offered by the Gunners. The report claimed that the Foxes are not interested in any of the players offered by Arsenal in the part-exchange deal and want a cash-only deal for Maddison.
From what has been witnessed so far in this summer transfer, Arsenal mean business and it would not be surprising if eventually, they do get their hands on James Maddison. But, for now, the Foxes are playing hardball, even though they have a history of letting their key players leave the club for hefty fees. N’Golo Kante, Riyad Mahrez and Harry Maguire have all made the switch away from Leicester City.
James Maddison – Arsenal Bound? pic.twitter.com/Fd5nPJfKEu
— TNW (@TNWComps) July 31, 2021
It will be interesting to see what Arsenal comes up with next, as the Foxes seem determined and will keep a hold on their key player unless there is a concrete offer placed on the table by the Gunners. £60 million for a player of Maddison’s quality is a just price tag and if Arsenal want to make their squad good enough to challenge for a top 4 slot next season, they will have to break the bank to sign the young midfielder.
Bear in mind, the Foxes just missed out on Champions League football, finishing behind Chelsea in the 4th place and won the FA Cup last season under the guidance of Brendan Rodgers. James Maddison was a key contributor to all that success, so this might turn out to be a tricky decision for the player himself, whether to stick with Brendan Rodgers’ team or make the glamorous switch to the Emirates under Mikel Arteta.
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The player would like to continue on his good performances as the Qatar World Cup is fast approaching and he would certainly want to be a part of Gareth Southgate’s World Cup squad. So far, Arsenal are hoping that the deal goes through while the Foxes will play the waiting game. It is a mind game at the moment between both parties and will be interesting to see how this deal pans out.
As things stand, neither of the clubs are going to make any good grounds in terms of their project for the next season. Arsenal need the player to fill the void in the middle of the park while Leicester City will miss out on cashing in on the player if they are too stubborn on their asking price. Some good negotiation skills will come in handy for both the parties involved and let’s hope that it works out in favour of Arsenal.
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