Arsenal could sign four contract rebels on the cheap including Liverpool pair

Arsenal remain in the hunt for new additions this summer, and they could land some top talents for cheap as players enter the final 12 months of their current contracts

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Arsenal have already been busy this summer, announcing deals Marquinhos from Sao Paulo and Fabio Veiria from Porto.

But that’s almost certainly not going to be the only business in terms of incomings with Mikel Arteta making no secret of his ambition to add greater quality to the squad ahead of the new campaign.

The North Londoners recently submitted a bid for Leeds United’s Raphinha and are also working on a deal for Manchester City ‘s Gabriel Jesus. Elsewhere though, there are a number of top European talents entering the final 12 months of their contracts and it’s possible the Gunners could look to benefit from making moves for such players.

The final year of a player’s contract is often a hugely uncertain period for both himself and the club. Attempts will usually be made to try and negotiate extensions, providing the club want to maintain the player’s services.

However if one cannot be reached, then pushing through a sale becomes a priority in order to avoid losing that asset for nothing 12 months later. And it’s at this moment when rivals can often profit and potentially land targets for a reduced fee.

Sadio Mane’s recent move to Bayern Munich is a prime example of this situation. The Senegal star scored 23 goals for Liverpool last season and is widely regarded as one of the best forward players in Europe. However, the German champions landed him for a fee of just £ 35million, way below his market value.

The 30-year-old had just one year remaining on his Liverpool contract though, meaning the Reds were forced to accept such an offer or risk losing him for nothing next summer.

With this in mind, Mirror Football has highlighted four players Arsenal could sign for cheap ahead of the new season.

Kalidou Koulibaly – Napoli

At one stage, Koulibaly was considered to be one of the best central defenders in the world. Although it’s now accepted the likes of Virgil Van Dijk have surpassed the 31-year-old, he’s still a top defender that would have the potential to hugely improve Arsenal’s defense next season.

Koulibaly has just one year left on his deal


SIPA USA / PA Images)

He often dominates against attackers both in the air and on the floor, while also being calm and composed in possession.

In his prime, there was talk of fees in excess of £ 60m to secure the coveted defender’s signature, but now with just 12 months left on his current Napoli deal, the Gunners could land him for around half of that.

Gavi – Barcelona

Despite being just 17, Gavi’s performances this season have put him on the radar of many top European clubs. Last month he netted Spain’s opening goal in their 2-2 draw with the Czech Republic, and in doing so became their youngest ever goalscorer.

Barcelona are desperate to make him put pen to paper on a new deal, which will have a release clause set to rise to £ 860m (€ 1bn), however they’ve so far failed.

Gavi’s deal is nearing an end

Without the ball, he’s tenacious and aggressive, yet with it, he’s got technical skills way beyond his years and he can already play a variety of penetrative balls through a defense or dribble his way through pressure from opposition players. He has a very high ceiling and would be somewhat of a coup for Arsenal.

Naby Keita – Liverpool

Keita is best described as an unorthodox midfielder who is at his best when dribbling through the lines, disrupting defenses and attempting high-risk-high reward passes. Injury issues have stunted his progression at Liverpool in recent years, though he was at his best again for much of last season and played more games in a single season than he had in each of the two campaigns prior.

Naby Keita joined Liverpool in 2018


NurPhoto / PA Images)

The Guinean international also played a starring across those appearances, as highlighted by his underlying numbers. Beyond his four goals and two assists, he also averaged more defensive pressures and successful tackles than any other Liverpool player who played over 1000 Premier League minutes.

Even so, there’s been no new contract offered to the 27-year-old, meaning a club like Arsenal could swoop in and land him for cheap this summer.

Roberto Firmino – Liverpool

Another Liverpool star who could be on the move is Firmino. It’s clear he won’t be offered a new Anfield deal, but he still has plenty to offer at Premier League level.

The Brazilian has been crucial to the success of Jurgen Klopp’s men in recent years. He’s not always stood out from a goalscoring perspective, though his record of 98 goals since arriving at Anfield back in 2015 can’t be sniffed at.

Roberto Firmino joined the Reds in 2015

It’s instead been his all-round influence in the third attacking that’s so often been most revered. Not only has he registered 74 assists during his time on Merseyside, but he’s also been the absolute best at glueing together everything Liverpool do well in attack.

Last season, Firmino played about a third of Liverpool’s Premier League matches, and his minutes on the pitch are likely to decrease further with the arrival of Darwin Nunez. A move to Arsenal might appeal over another season potentially sitting on the bench.

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