Football

Carlos Vela not interested in Arsenal return

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Real Sociedad president Jokin Aperribay says Carlos Vela does not want to leave the club to sign for Arsenal.

Vela, 25, has become somewhat of a star in La Liga, scoring 30 goals across two seasons in San Sebastian. His excellent form is in drastic contrast to his time at Arsenal where he failed to make an impact after signing as a prospective 17-year-old in 2006.

Arsene Wenger offloaded the Mexican to Real Sociedad in the summer of 2012 for around £2 million but, ingeniously, insisted on a buy-back clause of just £3.5 million, which Aperribay confirmed will be activated this summer.

Speaking to Spanish radio station Cadena SER, he said: "Arsenal have informed us that Vela would be with them next season."

As a dynamic forward, Vela would fill an area in Wenger's squad that has been found wanting in past seasons, and at just £3.5 million represents significant value for money.

However, there seems to be a fly in Arsenal's ointment as the player himself is not happy about the prospect of moving back to the Emirates Stadium. Having scored just 11-goals in a six-year spell with the Gunners, Vela seems to have doubts over whether a return to the Premier League would be a good career move.

Continuing with the interview, Aperribay confirmed that the player would ideally remain in La Liga with Real Sociedad.

He said: "We are fortunate that the player is keen to stay in San Sebastian with us and that's an important factor."

The problem for Arsenal is that the release clause means next to nothing if Vela does not agree personal terms with the club. There have been reports that Arsenal would be willing to sell the clause back to Real Sociedad for a fee of around £8 million with bonuses. With the striker valued at around £18 million, such a deal would seem to suit all parties.

There is also the potential for Arsenal to use their clause as leverage to seal a deal for Vela's strike partner Antoine Griezmann. The France international has arguably been more impressive than Vela this season and at 23 years old, represents better value.

Griezmann has a release clause £25m installed in his contract, but Arsenal could potentially negotiate a discount if they agree to terminate their right to buy Vela back for such a small fee. 

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