Mikel Arteta demands Ilkay Gundogan transfer as Gunners face Man City problem

Arsenal face Joao Cancelo problem

Arsenal have reason to be cautious with a potential move to sign Joao Cancelo from Manchester City this summer. The Portuguese defender was allowed to leave the Etihad Stadium on a six-month loan deal to join Bayern Munich after falling out of favour under Pep Guardiola.

The Gunners poached Gabriel Jesus and Oleksandr Zinchenko from City last summer – with both players having a huge impact on Mikel Arteta’s side. The improvement at the Emirates Stadium has been accelerated by the additions of the former City duo and it may stop Guardiola allowing players to leave his squad and reunite with Arteta in north London again.

Arsenal have been linked with a move for Cancelo as they look to bolster their defensive options ahead of next season – with the 28-year-old’s future at City uncertain. However, the Gunners may be put off making a move for Cancelo after the truth behind his exit from City in January has now been revealed.

Gundogan targeted

Mikel Arteta wants to sign Manchester City captain Ilkay Gundogan to replace Granit Xhaka at Arsenal this summer. The Swiss midfielder is in advanced talks to join Bayer Leverkusen in a €15million (£13million) deal and looks set to sign a contract until 2027 with the German club, football.london understands.

The news of Xhaka’s potential exit came as a surprise given his superb 2022/23 campaign which has seen him notch 14 goal contributions from 45 games. The Gunners midfielder would be turning 31 at the start of next season and it appears now may be the right time for both parties to go their own way.

When discussing Xhaka’s future at Arsenal last week, Arteta said: “The clarity is there. He is a player that has played I think every minute since I have been the manager.”

Fresh Declan Rice transfer ‘hint’

West Ham fans spotted captain Declan Rice complete a lap of honour on his own after already completing one with his team-mates after their last home game of the Premier League season. The Hammers beat relegation-threatened Leeds United 3-1 at the London Stadium with Rice scoring a crucial equaliser in the game.

There has been plenty of speculation over the 24-year-old’s future in recent months with reports linking him to Arsenal, Manchester United and Chelsea. football.london reported back in January that the Gunners are prioritising a move for Rice this summer as Mikel Arteta looks to bolster his midfield options ahead of the 2023/24 campaign.

The England international’s deal at the London Stadium is set to expire next summer with the Hammers having an option to extend his contract by a further year. Rice has rejected approaches from West Ham over signing a new deal after publicly stating his desire to play for a club challenging in the Champions League.

Hammers fans noticed their captain complete a lap of honour on his own after the customary team lap of appreciation following the victory against Leeds. Many on social media feel that Rice did this as he ‘knows’ it’s his last match as a West Ham player at the London Stadium – with a move to Arsenal growing increasingly likely.

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