Bernd Leno’s release clause with Bayer Leverkusen expired two weeks ago, at the end of May, but the Bundesliga club won’t ask for more, according to reports in Germany.
German outlet Kicker write that Leno’s €25m release clause was only valid until the end of May, so it’s no longer possible for Arsenal to activate it and get a deal done quickly. That could make negotiations rather precarious, with Leverkusen within their rights to hold out for the highest bidder, rather than letting the Gunners get it over the line.
Kicker don’t think that will be the case though. They claim the transfer fee “will not increase” compared to the €25m mark. They also write that Napoli play “no role in the future decision of Leno”.
It’s all down to Arsenal now, and Kicker think the 26-year-old would be keen to join Unai Emery’s side. He wants a European club with major media exposure, so he can get back on the radar of the German national team. The goalkeeper made it to the final four for this summer’s World Cup, but narrowly missed out on the trip to Russia.
With David Ospina seemingly on the way out, I’m sure Leno would be confident in his ability to nail down a starting spot over 36-year-old Petr Cech. We’ll see if that’s the case if the deal goes through.