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Gunners On Alert As Sporting Lisbon Close In On Arsenal Forward

Speculating from a report in Portuguese newspaper A Bola, Arsenal and Sporting Lisbon have agreed to a €5m transfer fee for Lucas Perez. The player’s agent is yet to confirm this news as the last we heard from him, he denied having any talks with Sporting Lisbon.

Perez joined Arsenal two years ago under Arsene Wenger in a £17 million deal after impressing the ex-manager by scoring 17 goals for La Liga side Deportivo La Coruna to help them avoid relegation.

Perez failed to impress the fans greatly in the debut season itself and the player went from scoring 17 goals at Deportivo to scoring just eight goals at Arsenal in the debut season. Lucas struggled for game time and was rarely ever seen in the line-up, limited only to cup appearances.

Perez was sent back to his former club, Deportivo, on-loan in the second year of his four years long deal as he miserably failed to impress the then manager, Arsene Wenger. Perez scored nine goals and eight assists while on loan, but unfortunately could not save the sinking ship for the second time, resulting in the relegation of the club. He was the subject of criticism for fans during the campaign which ultimately saw them relegated from La Liga.

After the arrival of the new manager, Perez was told to stay put and fight for his place in the team. A new chance for the 29-year-old to impress the new boss during the pre-season tour. The forward started two out of four pre-season matches, but it seems that even after giving his best, he might have failed to impress the new boss and the fans at large.

The four-year deal which started under Arsene Wenger might see some changes under the new manager Unai Emery who wishes to clear the crowded line-up for the striking position. With the like of  Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, Alexandre Lacazette,  Danny Welbeck, and youngster Eddie Nketiah all fighting for the first choice center-forward role, the chances of Lucas Perez seem to be slimming even more.

Sources close to Perez report that he is happy at Arsenal and wants to stay there and fight for a regular place in the first team line-up. While Emery reportedly is looking at options to sell the 29-year-old who has two years still left on his contract. the player is being linked to host of clubs like Lazio, Fiorentina, Frosinone and Newcastle United. The focus still remains on Sporting Lisbon who are willing to offer £5 million transfer fees, which although is noticeably less than what Arsenal spent on him will reduce the surplus crowd in the team and give chance to the nearly 30- year-old a chance to play regular football and reach the achievable potential.

Although, Sporting would be an odd destination for Perez as the Portuguese club is chaotic as of now, losing a number of high-profile players this summer after their controversial finish to last season, which included an attack on the players by certain fans and a huge rift between the squad and team owner.

Personally, I think it would be a good time for Perez to look for other options and play regular football rather than being benched at Arsenal for the majority of the season and waste his talent and career.

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