Raheem Sterling’s transfer decision may have impact on Arsenal’s £59m pursuit for Portugal star – Bailey Keogh

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Arsenal need to sign a winger who can also lead the line ahead of next season, as it would be addressing two positions that are needed with just one signing. Rafael Leao is certainly the ideal target for the Gunners, but Raheem Sterling is putting a move in doubt.

According to French news outlet Foot Mercato, Manchester City are considering a move for AC Milan’s Rafael Leao. The Manchester side reportedly view him as an ideal replacement for Sterling, whose contract runs out next year.

The Gunners have been linked to Leao, as he would be the perfect signing for Arsenal. However, with Manchester City reportedly knocking on the door, it would be hard to persuade him to move to London instead of Manchester.

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Arsenal reportedly registered interest in Leao earlier in the season as Italian outlet La Repubblica claimed that Arsenal had turned their attention to the AC Milan forward for the summer transfer window. It is a deal that Edu could look to revisit, as Arsenal could be short in the wing positions going into next season.

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However, a deal will not be easy to complete because alongside Newcastle’s reported interest, According to Italian news outlet Gazzetta dello Sport, PSG are prepared to offer AC Milan £59million to also secure the services of the Portugal international. The Parisian club are also willing to pay the youngster £5million-a-year in order for him to join the club, meaning Arsenal have been given an indication of what it would take to persuade the winger to join the club

Pepe has featured heavily on the right-hand side for Arsenal meaning Leao would not be a direct replacement for him. However, Martinelli has had a lot of success when given a chance on the right-hand side which would open a spot for Leao if Arteta is to opt for a more fluid system. Leao’s versatility to also play as a striker also makes him an attractive signing as the Gunners will be short in that position going into next season.

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The Portuguese attacker has 13 goals and seven assists for Milan this season, and would certainly add more quality to Arsenal’s frontline. What makes him more of a desirable signing is that he can feature on either the wing positions or as a lone forward, which highlights his versatility.

His excellent performances this season helped his Milan side to lift the Serie A trophy and beat their fierce rivals Inter Milan to first place. Leao’s importance to this trophy was highlighted by the fact that he won Serie A player of the season.

But with Manchester City being the current Premier League champions and featuring in the Champions League next season, it would be an uphill task to persuade to join the Gunners ahead of Pep Guardiola’s side. Despite this, he would still be an excellent coup for Arsenal therefore it is a deal that Arteta should look to explore.

Source by Football London

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