Arsenal are looking at Porto midfielder Danilo Pereira for a potential summer transfer, who could be available for a third of his €60m release clause.

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FC Porto midfielder Danilo Pereira (L) heads the ball on March 7, 2020. (Photo by MIGUEL RIOPA/AFP via Getty Images)

ESPN report that Arsenal are tracking Danilo Pereira and plan to explore a summer move for him in the coming weeks. Mikel Arteta wants to add a physical presence in midfield, but he’s working on a small budget thanks to COVID-19 and no Champions League.

Danilo has a release clause of €60m, but Porto are also suffering financially. They need to raise some cash this summer and could sell for around €20m as a result. The player only has a deal to 2022 after all, and he’s open to a move.

This doesn’t mean Arsenal are no longer after Thomas Partey. It’s just that right now, they can’t afford his release clause. Maybe that changes with a late run for European football or a major summer sale.

If not, Danilo might represent a more realistic option. Senior figures think he’d add maturity and leadership to the current squad.

The 28-year-old is up to 33 appearances this season, captaining Porto to the top of the table. The rumours linking him and Arsenal started a long time ago now, but never led to anything more. Perhaps this is the summer they finally will.

Arsenal do need an overhaul in midfield. The current lineups are makeshift at best and neither look particularly effective creatively nor defensively. Danilo would address the latter issue at least.