Arsenal’s move for Paris Saint-Germain’s Christopher Nkunku fell through because of Sven Mislintat, according to a report.
David Ornstein has suggested that PSG head coach Thomas Tuchel may have ended up halting talks for the 21-year-old over disagreements with Arsenal’s Sven Mislintat. The two previously clashed during their time at Borussia Dortmund, with Tuchel banning Mislintat from training at one stage.
Ornstein said (via Express): “The latest understanding is that Thomas Tuchel has vetoed it. He doesn’t want it to happen, he wants Nkunku to be available to him to play, he’s got a lot on the line.
“There is also some politics at play of course. There was a tempestuous end to the relationship between Tuchel and Mislintat [at Borussia Dortmund].”
Other outlets like FotbollTransfers have seemingly taken the quotes and run with them, claiming the disagreement was the sole cause of the breakdown in talks. Mislintat is set to leave Arsenal on February 8th anyway, so it would be a real shame if that was a key reason the move didn’t go through. There are other explanations though.
We know from Ornstein‘s previous reports on the deal that PSG wanted to bring in cover before they let Nkunku leave. The French club were linked with moves for the likes of Everton’s Idrissa Gueye and DC United’s Luciano Acosta, but neither deal ended up going through. That’s certainly an alternative explanation for why they held onto Nkunku.
There’s no reason Arsenal can’t revive the deal in the summer though.
If Mislintat really was the problem, he’s leaving anyway. Either way, The Gunners will see their negotiating position strengthened by Nkunku continuing to run his contract down. By the end of this season, the versatile midfielder will have just a year left on his deal. We’ll see if that helps Arsenal complete a permanent transfer.