Conflicting reports on whether Arsenal will pay Partey release clause

Alaves' Spanish midfielder Pere Pons (R) challenges Atletico Madrid's Ghanaian midfielder Thomas Partey during the Spanish League football match between Atletico Madrid and Alaves at the Wanda Metropolitan stadium in Madrid on June 27, 2020. (Photo by Gabriel BOUYS / AFP) (Photo by GABRIEL BOUYS/AFP via Getty Images)
Alaves' Spanish midfielder Pere Pons (R) challenges Atletico Madrid's Ghanaian midfielder Thomas Partey during the Spanish League football match between Atletico Madrid and Alaves at the Wanda Metropolitan stadium in Madrid on June 27, 2020. (Photo by Gabriel BOUYS / AFP) (Photo by GABRIEL BOUYS/AFP via Getty Images)

Conflicting reports in the last 24 hours make it unclear whether or not Arsenal are willing to pay the €50m release clause for Thomas Partey this summer.

Atletico Madrid's Ghanaian midfielder Thomas Partey attends a press conference at Anfield stadium in Liverpool, north west England on March 10, 2020, on the eve of their UEFA Champions League last 16 second leg football match against Liverpool. (Photo by Paul ELLIS / AFP)
Atletico Madrid midfielder Thomas Partey attends a press conference at Anfield on March 10, 2020. (Photo by Paul ELLIS / AFP)

Based on all the reports we’ve seen this summer, it seems fairly clear Arsenal hold a strong interest in Thomas Partey as their primary transfer target and he would welcome a move to North London, but it’s much less clear whether the Gunners would pay his release clause.

TheAFCBell claim Partey played his last game for Atletico on the final day of the La Liga season. He has an agreement over personal terms with Arsenal and they’ll pay his €50m clause to secure the move.

Meanwhile, Spanish journalist David Vinuesa Malbac reports that Arsenal will not pay the clause and Atletico refuse to negotiate. The club insist they have a strong relationship with Arsenal and the Gunners know things can’t go any further without Atletico’s consent.

The one thing both sides appear to agree on is that Arsenal will have to activate the clause to sign Partey. It doesn’t seem like there are any other options on the table, with Atletico showing no interest in a swap deal or lowering their asking price.

David Ornstein previously suggested Arsenal weren’t unwilling to pay the €50m. But obviously it’s a last resort if there are any strong alternatives. Plus, they’d probably need to raise some money through sales first. It’s all up in the air right now.