Spanish journalist Kike Marin, who is building up a great reputation for Arsenal news, claims that Unai Emery wants Ever Banega, with Lucas Torreira practically signed.
Marin wrote on Twitter on Wednesday morning that Arsenal have ‘practically closed’ the signing of Lucas Torreira. Now, Emery wants to move on to Banega, who has a €20m release clause with current club Sevilla.
The news fits with recent reports that Banega’s agent is travelling to London for talks in the coming days. Il Corriere del Calcio claim Sevilla are willing to listen to any offers, and value the player at around €12m.
Banega would be a relatively low-cost replacement for Jack Wilshere, who announced on Tuesday that he’s leaving the club. The Argentine is a very strong passer, creating chances for his teammates well, as well as being a bit of a set-piece specialist, and scoring the odd goal.
How reliable is Marin?
Marin’s record on Arsenal news in 2018 has been excellent. Most recently he revealed that Bernd Leno was the club’s top priority signing in goal, just 12 days before he was officially announced as their next signing.
In January, the journalist was one of the first to call Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang’s transfer to Arsenal. At the time he was largely laughed off, but turned out to be right.
Then, in April, when Luis Enrique was favourite for the Arsenal manager job, Marin wrote that the appointment was unlikely to happen. He then tipped Emery as a strong contender for the job a week before the announcement, when most of the media were saying Arteta was a done deal.
Perhaps the Spaniard has a more reliable link to the club now, with former Barcelona man Raul Sanllehi taking one of the top jobs, and a former La Liga boss as head coach. Wherever he’s getting his information, it’s worth paying attention.