Arsenal were left scrambling on deadline day for a midfielder after injuries to a number of key players and it has been revealed they turned down the chance to sign Florian Grillitsch on a free transfer.

BUCHAREST, ROMANIA - JUNE 21: Florian Grillitsch of Austria runs with the ball whilst under pressure from Oleksandr Zinchenko of Ukraine during the UEFA Euro 2020 Championship Group C match between Ukraine and Austria at National Arena on June 21, 2021 in Bucharest, Romania. (Photo by Daniel Mihailescu - Pool/Getty Images)
BUCHAREST, ROMANIA – JUNE 21: Florian Grillitsch of Austria runs with the ball whilst under pressure from Oleksandr Zinchenko of Ukraine during the UEFA Euro 2020 Championship Group C match between Ukraine and Austria at National Arena on June 21, 2021 in Bucharest, Romania. (Photo by Daniel Mihailescu – Pool/Getty Images)

Arsenal were first linked with a move for Austrian international Florian Grillitsch four years ago.

They were then linked the following season before silence for a few years.

This season, however, they were again linked with a move for Grillitsch as his contract ran out with TSG Hoffenheim.

A defensive midfielder, Grillitsch is also able to slot in at centreback, seemingly giving him the versatility Mikel Arteta looks for in his new recruits as a means of keeping the squad as tight as possible (there’ll be other, tactical reasons too, obviously, but at present it seems that it is just a way of keeping wages down).

For reasons that aren’t yet clear, Arsenal then decided late in the window that Grillitsch was not a player they wanted to sign and rejected the chance to bring him to the Emirates.

Valued at around £14.4m, which is nearly £5m more than Mohamed Elneny, Ajax snapped him up on deadline day, giving him a a one-year contract with the option of an additional two should things go well.

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