Arsenal are still “favourites” to sign Gremio midfielder Bitello, according to 90min.com journalist Graeme Bailey.
However, speaking on the Talking Transfers podcast, Bailey said that Monaco, Porto and Zenit St Petersburg have also now registered an interest in the Brazilian:
“It is going a bit slow. I think Arsenal have had other issues they’ve been dealing with. It’s not an expensive deal, Gremio are looking for a €10m (£8.6m) deal, it is a deal Edu has picked out, they really want the player, they like him a lot, they’ve done their homework on him.”
“I think Arsenal believe they are favourites for him, but there is interest from elsewhere, Monaco, Porto, Zenit St Petersburg. They don’t have it all their own way, but Arsenal are confident of getting him in.”
Arsenal’s first ‘offer’ was made last week
Brazilian journalist Rafael Pfeiffer reported last week that the Gunners had tabled their opening “offer” for Bitello.
He claimed that the London club had made a proposal worth €8m (£6.9m), which was “lower” than what Gremio was expecting.
There could be other rivals for Bitello’s signature
In addition to the three clubs that Bailey has mentioned as potential rivals to sign the 23-year-old, Italian website TMW have also suggested that Torino could enter the race for the player.
The Serie A side are said to be looking to take advantage of the delay in Arsenal securing Bitello’s signature. It is doubtful, though, whether they will have any luck in convincing him to make the switch to Italy instead.
Bitello is thought to be very keen on making the move to England. Although he may only be utilised as a squad player, it seems Edu and the recruitment team are confident that he possesses the ability to be a success in the Premier League.