Arsenal transfer latest: 'Mikel Arteta is a fan' of £70m Premier League star

Arsenal's Mikel Arteta on the sidelines amid speculation over a move for James Maddison

Journalist Pete O'Rourke claims that Arsenal have always been interested in Leicester City's James Maddison, but they will unlikely be able to afford him this summer.

What's the latest transfer news involving James Maddison? 

According to Chris Wheatley, Maddison is a target for Arsenal this summer and Gunners boss Mikel Arteta is a huge fan of the attacking midfielder.

However, the journalist suggested that agreeing on a fee could be a stumbling block for Arsenal. 

Read More: Latest Transfer News - PSG want Man United star to partner Gini Wijnaldum

What has Pete O'Rourke said about Arsenal's Maddison interest? 

O'Rourke reiterated that Arsenal are keen on the playmaker, but doubts whether a move will materialise this summer.

"I did a story last year. Arsenal were very keen on Maddison, he was quite high up on their list of targets," said O'Rourke, speaking on The Football Terrace.

"Obviously it didn’t happen last summer for various reasons so the interest has always been there. Mikel Arteta is a fan of Maddison and we all know that Maddison on his day is probably one of the best playmakers in the Premier League."

He added, "On the flip side, I just can't see Leicester selling him this summer."

Check out what O'Rourke said in full about Maddison in the video below...

How much would Maddison cost Arsenal? 

O'Rourke suggests that Leicester are unlikely to want to sell Maddison and the Foxes could demand a fee of up to £70m for the England international.

"I don’t think they’ll be too keen to lose James Maddison because he’s a key player for them when he is fit.

"If Arsenal are looking to sign him they could be looking at £60m, maybe £70m to prize James Maddison away and I don’t think Arsenal have got that money."

According to Transfermarkt, Maddison is valued at £49.5m. This suggests that with three years remaining on his contract, O'Rourke's estimate is certainly in the right ballpark.

Why are Arsenal targeting Maddison? 

Maddison has been in impressive form over the last three seasons with 21 goals and 15 assists in the Premier League. However, Arsenal have seemingly been forced to switch their attention to the Leicester midfielder as a result of missing out on other targets.

According to football.london, Arsenal were seriously interested in Emi Buendia and even launched a bid for the Norwich playmaker. Despite the Gunners' efforts, they were beaten to his signature by Aston Villa as they put forward a better offer to Buendia's camp.

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