HomeTRANSFERSMikel Arteta gives Arsenal the through pass for a transfer as 'advanced...

Mikel Arteta gives Arsenal the through pass for a transfer as ‘advanced talks’ begin.

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Mikel Arteta gives Arsenal the through pass for a transfer as ‘advanced talks’ begin.

The Arsenal manager is interested in one of the club’s lesser-known transfer targets as he seeks to improve the depth of his midfield. With Arteta’s side preparing for a title challenge, Arsenal are thought to be on the verge of signing Vitoria Guimaraes defensive midfielder Ibrahima Bamba, with ‘advanced talks’ with the player’s agent.

Mikel Arteta is looking to add to his midfield options, especially since Mohamed Elneny’s injury appears to be worse than first thought. It is widely assumed that the Egypt international will miss the majority of the season, so the Gunners have increased their efforts to sign Bamba.

According to the Portuguese newspaper Jornal de Noticias, a deal is nearing completion after Bamba’s agent visited London earlier this week. Arsenal will do everything possible to complete the transfer before the transfer window closes at the end of the month.

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“It is true that I was in London, but I was just arriving from Germany where I was watching [Edmond] Tapsoba’s game,” his agent, Filipe Macedo Alves, told O Jogo. Bamba is not the only player with whom I collaborate.

“He is a player profile that is clearly of interest to many clubs but today he is a Vitoria player and is only focused on Monday’s game against Chaves. The market is open, but I’m not going to add to the speculation.”

Guimaraes are not in a position to be cornered into selling one of their prized assets on the cheap, according to the selling club.

Bamba’s current contract expires in the summer of 2026, requiring the Gunners to trigger the midfielder’s ¬£26.3 million release clause.

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Bamba’s rise to the status of Arsenal transfer target has been meteoric, with the 20-year-old only making his Guimaraes debut in February 2022, less than a year ago.

The midfielder was called up to the senior Italy national team last year but has yet to make his debut for the Azzurri.

Bamba has actually played in the middle of a back-three for his team this season, but he had a string of stellar performances as a defensive midfielder last season, and that is where Arteta sees him if he makes the move to North London.

Arteta’s men even contacted Guimaraes and asked to be kept updated on any developments if they intended to sell Bamba elsewhere, demonstrating their keen interest and admiration for Bamba.

Mikel Arteta gives Arsenal the through pass for a transfer as ‘advanced talks’ begin.

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