Mikel Arteta offered transfer hope – and could have Man City mentor Guardiola to thank

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Mikel Arteta could be about to be handed a lifeline by his former mentor Pep Guardiola this summer, with the Manchester City head coach reportedly open to selling one of his key players

Mikel Arteta may be able to benefit from Pep Guardiola's decision
Mikel Arteta may be able to benefit from Pep Guardiola’s decision

Juventus are reportedly considering a move for Manchester City defender Aymeric Laporte this summer which could potentially spell good news for Arsenal boss Mikel Arteta.

Reports in Italy claim that the Bianconeri are looking for a replacement for long-serving stalwart Giorgio Chiellini, who has left the club on a free transfer after 16 years with the Italian giants. Laporte is one of Max Allegri’s top targets, along with Arsenal defender Gabriel Magalhaes and Monaco’s Benoit Badiashile.

But Corriere dello Sport claim Spain international Laporte could prove to be obtainable this summer, with the Man City center-back ‘not considered non-transferrable’ by the Premier League champions. The 28-year-old arrived at the Etihad Stadium in a £ 47m deal from Athletic Bilbao back in 2018 and has become a key member of Guardiola’s backline.







Gabriel Magalhaes is set to remain at Arsenal despite interest from Juventus
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For that reason, the Catalan coach would be loathe to lose one of his most important defensive figures. But with John Stones, Ruben Dias and Nathan Ake all available to play at the back, competition is rife for places and Laporte may be tempted to try a new challenge in Italy.

News of Juve’s interest in Laporte may well be music to the ears of Arteta, who was faced with the prospect of losing Gabriel, one of his most crucial players this season. The 24-year-old, a £ 23m signing from Lille in 2020, has gone from strength to strength alongside Ben White and emerged as a crucial player for the Gunners, scoring five goals and missing only three Premier League games.

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The Serie A side were understood to be keen on the £ 40m-rated defender a few weeks ago, but their apparent pursuit of Laporte suggests their interest has cooled in the Arsenal man. The Brazilian now looks likely to stay at the Emirates for the time being, given that Juventus do not have the financial muscle to afford to sign two expensive center-backs in the same transfer window.






Aymeric Laporte has emerged as a target for Juventus

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Juventus director Federico Cherubini recently traveled to London on a transfer-related trip, which many assumed to be related to their potential interest in Gabriel. But reports now say the Italian chief has revived their interest in Laporte, although, it is too early to completely rule out a move for Gabriel, with talks yet to begin between City and Juventus.

Keeping Gabriel could also give Arteta the green light to sanction William Saliba’s move to Marseille. The 21-year-old has spent the season on loan with the Ligue 1 outfit and won the Young Player of the Season award, and the Frenchman is keen to prolong his stay in his home nation with Champions League football on offer.

The Gunners are reluctant to sell but Saliba’s decision to make public his desire to leave, without playing a single minute of football for the club since his £ 27m move in 2019, could see him depart. Newcastle are also understood to be tracking the France international ahead of a possible summer switch.

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