Arsenal were very surprised by Aston Villa’s bids for Emile Smith Rowe in the summer, and they laughed both of them off immediately.
Just three months ago, Arsenal still hadn’t officially confirmed a new contract for Emile Smith Rowe. It feels like a lifetime ago now, but there was some uncertainty over the young midfielder’s future this summer.
The Gunners laughed both bids off, swiftly rejecting them and making it clear Smith Rowe would not be available at any price. Not long after that, the 21-year-old had his new deal with Arsenal, extending to 2026.
Smith Rowe has since proven a key part of Mikel Arteta’s Arsenal side. He’s appeared in every Premier League game this season, starting seven of the eight, and he also made an appearance and scored in the League Cup third round.
It’s no wonder Arsenal had no interest in selling a 21-year-old homegrown first-team starter to a Premier League club for £30m. Hopefully Smith Rowe can remind Villa why he’s worth more than that on Friday.