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Arsenal poised to outbid Barcelona for €60m midfielder

Published: Updated: 04:37, 21 Jan 2024
The Gunners have been long admirers of Martin Zubimendi

In the competitive world of football transfers, Arsenal is reportedly set to beat Barcelona in securing Real Sociedad midfielder, Martin Zubimendi. Despite strong interest from the Catalan club, it appears that the Gunners are preparing to pay his €60 million (£53m) release clause.

Zubimendi has been a target for several top teams due to his impressive performance as a defensive midfielder. He has been on Barcelona's radar as a potential replacement for Sergio Busquets who left for Inter Miami last summer. However, with Arsenal now said to be closing in on a move, north London could soon be home to this talented player.

Barcelona are also desperate for midfielder to replace Busquets

Barcelona had previously signed former youth player Oriol Romeu as a temporary replacement for Busquets. However, Romeu's struggle since his move from Girona has led Barça back into the market. Their need to strengthen their central midfield saw them reignite their interest in Zubimendi.

However, according to reports, Arsenal seems ahead of the Catalans and could complete a deal during the final days of the winter window.

Aston Villa and Athletic Club have also shown interest in this Spain midfielder but it seems more likely that he will join fellow Basque Mikel Arteta at Arsenal. Arteta himself played early in his career for Real Sociedad before moving onto Everton.

Release clause must be triggered to sign Real Sociedad star

While both clubs are keen on signing Zubimendi, financial constraints seem likely play an important role here. According to reports, while Arsenal is prepared to pay Zubimendi’s €60 million (£53m) release clause; Barcelona currently isn't positioned financially well enough  to complete such an expensive deal.

Often compared to Busquets for his style and intelligence, Zubimendi's potential move to Arsenal could see England midfielder Declan Rice feature in a different role. This comes after Rice was withdrawn due to a hamstring problem during Saturday's 5-0 win over Crystal Palace.

The transfer window is heating up with Gunners reportedly leading the race for Martin Zubimendi. If successful, this could be a significant addition to their squad and potentially reshape their midfield dynamics. For Barcelona, missing out on Zubimendi would mean they need to look elsewhere for reinforcements in their central midfield.

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