Mikel Arteta has confirmed that he wants Dani Ceballos and the Real Madrid midfielder wants to come back to Arsenal and now it seems the two clubs are close to a deal.

LONDON, ENGLAND: Dani Ceballos and Sead Kolasinac of Arsenal FC talk during the warm-up on July 26, 2020. (Photo by Rui Vieira/Pool via Getty Images)

Earlier this month, El Espanol reported that Arsenal had Dani Ceballos’ approval to pursue another move for next season and that the Gunners reportedly ‘know’ he’ll choose them if he doesn’t have a spot at Real Madrid.

That seems like an accurate report, judging by Mikel Arteta’s recent comments. The Arsenal head coach told reporters when they asked about the Spaniard, “Well, we have some talks and Dani knows really well what I think about him.

“He was pretty clear with me as well that his intention was to remain with us but obviously Real Madrid is involved and I don’t know yet what they want to do with the player. But he’s a player that we are interested in because we really saw, in the last few months of the season, what he is capable of bringing to us.”

Ceballos was certainly keeping a close eye on Arsenal against Liverpool in the Community Shield as he tweeted three screenshots of him watching and celebrating Arsenal’s game.

Dani Ceballos via Twitter (it wouldn’t show properly) other Tweets here and here

Now, it’s being reported that Arsenal and Real Madrid are ‘closing the deal’.

Translated, it says, “Dani Ceballos, will go on loan for another season to
@Arsenal

“Real Madrid and the English team are closing the deal. They want him to continue progressing and gaining experience in the Premier.”

Real Madrid were reportedly trying to keep open the possibility of a stay this season. Outlets in Spain claimed Ceballos’ future would depend on Zinedine Zidane, as it has always done.

All three parties were initially waiting for the end of the season and further conversations with Real Madrid.

Arsenal won the FA Cup to qualify for the Europa League, but had to wait a little longer for Real’s Champions League exit before any further progress could be made.

LONDON, ENGLAND - JULY 07: Dani Ceballos of Arsenal reacts during the Premier League match between Arsenal FC and Leicester City at Emirates Stadium on July 07, 2020 in London, England. Football Stadiums around Europe remain empty due to the Coronavirus Pandemic as Government social distancing laws prohibit fans inside venues resulting in all fixtures being played behind closed doors. (Photo by Michael Regan/Getty Images)
LONDON, ENGLAND – JULY 07: Dani Ceballos  (Photo by Michael Regan/Getty Images)

Signs indicated positive talks between Ceballos and his parent club. They brought him back into training and reports suggested he was getting a chance to impress in pre-season.

Others claimed this was a tactical move to bring in more money from Ceballos’ loan or sale.

Most recently, the Spanish media hinted that Arsenal were in negotiations over another loan.

There’s also the matter of Arsenal’s interest in Houssem Aouar and Thomas Partey.

There’s no way Arsenal will bring in all three, and it’s very unlikely they would even sign two.

So, if one, or both, are Arsenal’s primary targets, a move for Ceballos would take a backseat, for now. That might suit the player if reports that came out a few days after this one are anything to go by.

They claim Ceballos has told Real Madrid he wants to return to Real Betis, which would be different to what Arteta said Ceballos told him.

The main report from Spain claims, however, that his future is unlikely to be sorted until the final days of the transfer window so this isn’t going to be over anytime soon.