• Monday, June 17, 2024
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BusinessDay

Arsenal pull out of race to sign Osimhen 

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Arsenal have reportedly pulled out of the race to sign Napoli’s highly-rated striker Victor Osimhen due to the substantial transfer fee involved. Reports from Italy suggest that the Gunners are unwilling to meet the €130 million (£110.8 million) release clause in Osimhen’s contract.

According to Sky Sports Italy, while Arsenal hold Osimhen in high regard, the financial demands of the deal are too high for the Premier League club to meet. Napoli president Aurelio de Laurentiis remains firm that the Nigeria international’s release clause must be triggered for any deal to proceed.

Osimhen, who netted 15 goals in Serie A last season, was widely expected to leave Napoli at the end of the season. In January, de Laurentiis hinted that the striker could move to Real Madrid, Paris Saint-Germain, or a Premier League club this summer.

Despite an option to join the Saudi Pro League, Osimhen prefers to remain in Europe.

While Saudi Pro League clubs could afford the fee, Osimhen’s desire to stay in Europe might prompt Napoli to reconsider their asking price, especially since they need the funds from his transfer to make new signings this summer.

Napoli, who recently hired Antonio Conte as head coach, are also interested in reuniting Conte with Romelu Lukaku, who is set to return to Chelsea after a loan spell at Roma.

However, Chelsea insist that Lukaku’s £38 million release clause must be met, and believe that Osimhen’s departure is necessary for Napoli to move for the Belgian striker.

Chelsea have shown past interest in Osimhen but have ruled themselves out this summer due to the high transfer fee and concerns over his injury record.