Arsenal are believed to be back in the hunt for Juventus midfielder, Arthur Melo, having been linked with Brazilian back in January.
What’s the word?
As per journalist Claudio Raimondi (via Tutto Juve), the Gunners could well be set to reignite their interest in the 25-year-old this summer, having attempted to bring the €40m (£34m) player to the Premier League during the winter window only for the deal to fall through.
Speaking about the 22-cap international’s future – and that of club teammate Aaron Ramsey – Raimondi stated: “Juve are interested in Fabian Ruiz, but before starting a real negotiation, they must resolve the Ramsey-Arthur situations.
“For the Welshman, who is of interest to the Turkish team coached by Pirlo, they will move towards the termination of his contract with severance pay, while for the Brazilian midfielder, something is moving on the Arsenal side.”
The playmaker joined the Serie A side on a reported £66m deal back in 2020 from Catalan giants Barcelona, with fellow midfielder Miralem Pjanic moving in the other direction.
Arteta’s own Xavi
While that move has failed to work out for either party, with Arthur having fallen down the pecking order in Italy and with Pjanic spending last season on loan at Besiktas, that should not overshadow what would be a major coup for Mikel Arteta and co, were they to bring the former to the club this summer.
Despite starting just 11 league games last term, the £16.2m-rated gem is still a supremely gifted player in possession, notably ranking in the top 4% for pass completion and the top 7% for attempted passes among those in his position across Europe’s top five leagues.
Should Arsenal sign Arthur?
Not for me!
The man to keep things ticking in the centre of the park, the £125k-per-week unsurprisingly drew comparisons to current Blaugrana coach Xavi Hernandez during his spell at the Nou Camp, with former teammate Lionel Messi stating upon his arrival:
“Those who came are very good. Arthur, I didn’t know that much about but he seems similar to Xavi. He’s very safe and trustworthy. He has the La Masia style. Playing short passes, without losing the ball, and he grasped it quickly, the dynamic of the team.”
Such a glowing assessment from arguably one of the greatest players of all time illustrates just what a talent the Juve man is, while the likeness to the aforementioned Xavi will also set pulses racing back in north London, with the Spaniard having enjoyed a lengthy career at the elite level.
A product of the famed La Masia academy, he went on to rack up 766 appearances in all competitions for the La Liga outfit, scoring 85 goals and providing 185 assists in that time, while also claiming a plethora of major honours, including four Champions League triumphs.
On the international front, the now veteran star was part of the remarkable La Roja side that came out on top in three successive major tournaments between 2008 and 2012, having arguably won all there is to win in both forms of the game.
Arteta and co will know that such talents and such success is rare, although the Gunners boss will no doubt be keen to bring in a Xavi-esque talent like Arthur who can dictate the tempo in the centre of the park, having himself been a product of that much-celebrated Barcelona youth system.