“Verbal talks” have been held between Arsenal and Manchester City regarding a potential deal for Joao Cancelo, according to Sky Sports reporter Dharmesh Sheth.
The journalist claims that initial discussions about the Portuguese international have taken place but there is a sizeable gap between the clubs in terms of the valuation of the player:
“It’s another Manchester City player they are interested in, it’s Joao Cancelo. We know that he was on loan at Bayern Munich. Bayern didn’t take up the option to buy him on a permanent basis. He has still got two years left on his contract, so he won’t come cheap. Early suggestions are there is a gap in valuation in early verbal talks between the two clubs about what Manchester City want and what Arsenal would be prepared to offer.”
As Sheth mentions, Bayern did not trigger their purchase clause for Cancelo, mainly due to the fact that it would cost them €70m (£60.2m) to make his loan move permanent.
City are likely expecting a similar fee from Arsenal and it seems the Gunners are not prepared to a do deal for that price at the moment.
A replacement for Kieran Tierney is needed
With Tierney poised to leave the Emirates this summer, with Newcastle favourites for his signature, Arsenal will be looking to strengthen their options on the left-hand side of defence. For that reason, Cancelo would be a great addition, especially as he can also be deployed on the right flank.
It should be noted that the 29-year-old wouldn’t have any issues playing in the inverted fullback role either, having been used in a similar way at Manchester City.
Are there alternatives to Cancelo?
If an agreement can’t be reached over a transfer fee, the Gunners will need to consider other possible options.
While they haven’t been many left-backs linked in recent months, we did suggest five potential targets in an article last month.