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Arsenal agree to sell Nacho Monreal to Athletic Bilbao

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The Spanish press have once again claimed that Nacho Monreal is on his way out of Arsenal with AS saying a deal with Athletic Bilbao is very close to completion.

Over the weekend we reported a story from Marca, which claimed the La Liga outfit were in advanced talks with Arsenal over a deal for the 16-time Spain international.

It now seems that despite Arsenal travelling to Singapore on their pre-season tour this week, the two parties have moved significantly closer to an agreement.

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This latest report claims that Bilbao have offered Monreal a three-year contract with the option for a further 12 months if certain performance-related targets are met.

Monreal, who turns 30 in February, is happy with the terms and is ready to commit to the Basque club despite his contentedness in north London.

Selling at a loss

The left-back was ready to commit to Arsenal and expected Arsene Wenger to activate a clause on his contract that would extend it from 2016 to 2017. However, the Frenchman has been drawn into the idea of reclaiming much of the £10 million he originally paid to sign him in 2013.

Bilbao are expected to pay €10m (£7m) for Monreal, meaning the Gunners will be losing a significant amount of money on their original outlay. Despite the loss, Wenger obviously feels that this is the right time to sell.

Replacement

As in Marca, this newspaper report also claims Arsenal are trying to sign Napoli left-back Faouzi Ghoulam as a replacement for Monreal.

It says that the younger, faster Algerian can be signed for just over the €10m that Arsenal are set to receive for Monreal, capping what could potentially be a fine bit of business. However, other reports from Italy have suggested that Napoli are demanding as much as £10m for Ghouzam.

English media coverage

It is hard to take this transfer rumour seriously when no respected English journalists are covering the story. It had previously been reported by The Mirror that Bilbao were tracking Monreal, but it also claimed that Arsenal had dismissed the idea of selling him.

The fact that Monreal joined Arsenal on their tour of Asia in telling as Wenger would be unlikely to let a player close to leaving travel so far from his apparent destination.

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Topics:
Athletic Bilbao
Transfer News
Nacho Monreal
Arsenal
Premier League
La Liga
Football

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