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‘No chance’ – Arsenal transfer declaration hints at Arteta’s striker plans

The father of an Arsenal star has delivered an emphatic statement about a potential transfer which has hinted at Mikel Arteta’s future plans for his forward line.

Arsenal appear on course to experience something of an overhaul in their forward ranks. Both Alexandre Lacazette and Eddie Nketiah are in the final years of their contracts. At present, neither player seems likely to pen fresh terms.

That would leave Arteta with Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang as his undisputed No 1 striker, and just Gabriel Martinelli and Folarin Balogun for back-up.

Dipping into the transfer window would then become a distinct possibility. Balogun has rarely featured for the Gunners’ first-team despite regularly impressing in the Under-23s.

Martinelli, meanwhile, has had to settle for a bit-part role ever since returning from a knee injury in December 2020.

That led to recent speculation within the media linking the Brazilian with a return to Corinthians. The 20-year-old was on the club’s books as a youth team player between 2010-14.

However, Martinelli’s father, Joao, has now dismissed any notion his son will leave Arsenal any time soon. In fact, he insisted Martinelli is “considered not for sale” and is loved for his “dedication” to the cause in north London.

Via Fabrizio Romano, Joao said: “Arsenal have received some proposal for Gabriel from European clubs but they’ve refused – he’s considered not for sale”

The Mirror carry additional quotes from Martinelli’s father. “There is no chance of him going to Corinthians or any other Brazilian club,” he continued.

“Since he came back from an injury, he’s been playing a lot less than he would have liked. They even painted some proposals from Europe, but Arsenal has already warned that they will not release him.

“People like him a lot. Not only for what he plays, but also for his dedication. Martinelli is almost always the first to arrive for training and the last to leave.”

Martinelli has always caught the eye when appearing in a Gunners shirt. As such, and with Arteta recently declaring a January loan deal will not be sanctioned, Martinelli appears on course to have a greater role in Arsenal’s forward line in the months and years to come.

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Arsenal ‘destined’ to land Tottenham wing target

Meanwhile, Arsenal are ‘destined’ to beat bitter rivals Tottenham to the signature of a Juventus winger worth around €30m, per a report.

With Italian pair Antonio Conte and Fabio Paratici occupying prominent roles in the Tottenham system, few would be surprised to see Spurs target Serie A in the transfer market. Indeed, Tottenham were recently linked with raiding Juventus for Swedish winger, Dejan Kulusevski.

The 21-year-old was reported by Italian outlet Calciomercato to be on Juventus’ chopping block. Selling Kulusevski would be phase one in their plan to snag Fiorentina’s free-scoring striker Dusan Vlahovic.

A Tottenham raid would scupper the Old Lady’s plans. A Vlahovic deal is seemingly dependant on Kulusevski moving to Fiorentina as bait at present. However, a new update from the Italian media has suggested both Spurs and Juve could be left disappointed.

Writing in his column for TuttoMercatoWeb, journalist Enzo Bucchioni noted (via Sport Witness) Spurs’ interest in the Swede.

However, he claimed Kulusevski is ‘destined’ for the Gunners. Adding further fuel to the fire, he claimed a ‘€30m’ bid will seal a deal.

READ MORE: Three facing axe before Arteta can complete Arsenal puzzle with £32m signing

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