Granit Xhaka’s proposed move to Roma has been put on hold after the Italian side refused to meet Arsenal’s asking price for the midfielder.
Xhaka has been expected to swap Arsenal for Roma for a good few weeks now, with everyone involved keen to get the deal done. Meanwhile, the fact that the Gunners have been actively pursuing a replacement suggested they were confident a deal would be struck soon.
Well, according to a handful of outlets in Italy, things have gone downhill quite quickly because Arsenal have refused to budge from their £17m asking price for the Swiss midfielder.
Firstly, we had Il Romanista‘s suggestion that the deal had ‘fossilised in a total stalemate’. Roma have refused to come above £13m while Arsenal remain steadfast at £17m, and it’s getting to a point where things might break down completely.
That has since been backed up by La Stampa (via the Daily Mail), who go as far as to say that ‘everything has stopped’ between the two clubs and Xhaka is now facing the prospect of having to report for pre-season with Arsenal.
Xhaka is thought to be determined to leave Arsenal and has made it clear that he does not want to join up with the pre-season camp, but with the way things are going, he may have no choice but to do just that.
Xhaka will be unhappy about this, but there will be even more frustration from Roma boss Jose Mourinho, who made it clear from the first day he joined Roma that he wanted Xhaka as his first signing.
Mourinho wanted the Xhaka deal done weeks ago but has been made to wait this long, and it now looks as though he might not even get his man at all. I’m sure that’ll go down well.
With so long left in the transfer window, there’s a good chance this deal could restart and Xhaka could end up getting his wish, but at the minute, it’s looking unlikely.
If Arsenal can’t offload Xhaka, they may have to abandon plans to sign a new midfielder. The Gunners had been looking at Lyon’s Houssem Aouar, Wolves’ Ruben Neves and Brighton’s Yves Bissouma to replace Xhaka, but moves for any of them appear unlikely while Xhaka remains on the books.