Nicolas Tagliafico admits it is flattering to be linked with Arsenal as he hints at a move not long after his agent confirmed he turned down a new contract at Ajax.

AMSTERDAM, NETHERLANDS - SEPTEMBER 19: Nicolas Tagliafico of Ajax celebrates scoring a goal during the Group E match of the UEFA Champions League between Ajax and AEK Athens at Johan Cruyff Arena on September 19, 2018 in Amsterdam, Netherlands. (Photo by Dean Mouhtaropoulos/Getty Images)
AMSTERDAM, NETHERLANDS – SEPTEMBER 19: Nicolas Tagliafico of Ajax celebrates scoring a goal during the Group E match of the UEFA Champions League between Ajax and AEK Athens at Johan Cruyff Arena on September 19, 2018 in Amsterdam, Netherlands. (Photo by Dean Mouhtaropoulos/Getty Images)

Arsenal have been linked with a move for Nicolas Tagliafico to replace Nacho Monreal who seems set to leave the club on a free transfer when his contract expires in the summer.

Just over a week ago, amid the speculation, Tagliafico’s agent, Ricardo Schlieper, said, “Ajax has made a proposal, but we have refused.

“Let us wait and see what happens in the transfer market. Ajax has not yet spoken about the desired transfer amount, but I suspect the club is asking more than 20 million euros for him.

“Nico is a top professional and has unprecedented discipline, which means that sooner or later he’ll get the chance to take the step he wants.”

Now the player has spoken about his desire to take the ‘next step’ in the summer.

“I think in the summer it could be a natural time to take the step,” Tagliafico said as reported by The Mirror.

“But I try not to think about taking that step just yet because we have many important games to focus on.

“Yes, it’s flattering [the links to English clubs] because I think it’s the most competitive league.

“When you are a child, the target is to come to Europe and play in a top league like the Premier League. I came to Ajax because of the philosophy, the style of football and the club.

“I could have gone to Betis in Spain, but I knew that at Ajax I would learn and improve which made it the best step – and it’s happened as I predicted.

“It was the perfect moment to come to Europe, it was late because I was 25, it’s late for a player. It was tough to take the decision, but I needed to take a risk.

“We’ve had this same plan for a long time. It’s a club that is used to selling young players so we know we have to rebuild every now and then.

“But this year especially was one of the best years because the squad and the players which got together was really good and the players, the staff and the fans are together. We’re on the same path like a family.”

Tagliafico has five goals and six assists in 37 appearances this campaign, and he’s been called up by Argentina for every recent international break. He’d certainly make a great addition to the team if Arsenal can get a deal through.

The 26-year-old is out of contract in 2022.

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