Brighton have successfully held out in their efforts to keep hold of Ben White so far this summer, but Arsenal are reportedly poised to come back with a fresh bid for the England centre-back.
In what’s likely to be the biggest deal of their transfer window, Mikel Arteta's side will hope a third offer for the international defender proves the tipping point as Brighton hold out for a reported £50million fee.
Anderlecht’s Albert Sambi Lokonga will probably be a Gunner by then, however, as the midfield gem looks set to become Arsenal’s first major signing of the summer window.
His arrival has been described as being ‘imminent’ in the latest reports, while Alexandre Lacazette and another Eddie Nketiah have been linked with potential exits.
Daily Star Sport runs through the latest transfer rumours and headlines surrounding the Emirates Stadium as business in north London looks set to pick up…
Gunners prepare third White bid
Having seen their advances spurned twice already, it’s said Arsenal are ready to return with a third offer for Brighton star White as they seek more improvements in defence this summer.
Sky Sports reported a new-and-improved offer is expected from the Emirates club, and Brighton owner Tony Bloom is open to selling provided the Seagulls see their valuation met.
Arsenal’s latest bid for the 23-year-old amounted to £45m plus another £5m in bonuses, but like their opening offer, that too was turned down by Brighton as it fell short of their estimation.
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It was previously reported by football.London that White is eager to complete the move, and Arsenal have funds available after David Luiz’s exit freed up a significant share of the wage bill.
White is currently away with England as they prepare to face Denmark at Wembley in the semi-finals of Euro 2020 on Wednesday, although he’s yet to make an appearance at the tournament.
The central defender made his Premier League debut in September 2020 and was called up to Gareth Southgate's England squad as a late replacement for the injured Trent Alexander-Arnold.
Lokonga signing ‘imminent’
Word has been building for a number of weeks that Anderlecht ace Lokonga is set to become an Arsenal player, and those rumours finally look ready to end as the move nears completion.
That’s after Belgian outlet Walfoot reported he hasn’t travelled to Alkmaar with the rest of Vincent Kompany’s squad for a pre-season training camp that started on Monday.
Lokonga, 21, is understood to have already agreed terms with his Premier League suitors ahead of his transfer, which is expected to cost Arsenal €17.5m (£15m) plus €4m (£3.4m) in add-ons.
La Derniere Heure previously reported the youngster’s transfer is ‘closer than ever,’ and Lokonga—who has been called up to train with Belgium’s senior squad in the past—is on track to become an Arsenal player.
Lokonga scored three times in 37 first-team appearances for Anderlecht last season, but his absence from the club’s summer training camp is the latest indicator he’s ready to leave.
Lacazette, Nketiah sales considered
Having missed out on European qualification for the upcoming campaign, it was always likely that Arsenal would need to consider player sales as a means of raising transfer funds this summer.
And the attacking duo of Lacazette and Nketiah could be among those set for the chop unless they can agree new contracts, with each of their current deals scheduled to expire in 12 months.
Sky Sports News reporter Dharmesh Sheth provided a recent update on both players’ prospects: "Eddie Nketiah is another player who Arteta does rate but didn't get too much first-team football towards the end of last season.
"There were talks over a new contract – that did not bring a resolution so he will leave in this transfer window.
"We understand Bayer Leverkusen and three Premier League clubs are interested."
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Nketiah, 22, previously impressed on loan at Leeds during the first half of the 2019/20 campaign but was recalled and went on to score six times in 29 senior appearances for Arsenal last term.
Lacazette, 30, has been an even more prominent member in Arteta’s plans, but Sheth added he could also be sold for the right price: "This is an interesting one because he was in the plans of Arteta and he was getting a lot of first-team football last season.
"But he's entered the last year of his contract, no talks are planned or are underway over a new contract.
"If an offer does come in that Arsenal are happy with, they will let Lacazette go. Otherwise Lacazette will see out the remainder of his contract and leave for free next summer.”
Any suitors outside the Premier League would be free to negotiate a pre-contract agreement with the French forward—who scored 17 goals in 43 outings last season—from January 2022.
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