Arsenal transfer news: Man City ace earmarked as James Maddison alternative

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Manchester City midfielder Bernardo Silva has emerged as a shock target for Arsenal boss Mikel Arteta, according to a report from The Mirror

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What’s the latest news involving Bernardo Silva?

The 26-year-old Portuguese international is aware that he is likely to slip down the pecking order at the Etihad Stadium following the £100 arrival of Jack Grealish from Aston Villa – and appears keen to move on to pastures new.

During a press conference on Friday afternoon, City manager Pep Guardiola admitted that he would be open to letting Silva depart this summer if the right over is received.

The player himself reportedly favours a move to La Liga, where both Barcelona and Atletico Madrid have previously shown interest. However, the well-publicised financial problems affecting several teams in the Spanish top-flight would likely prevent either deal from becoming reality.

Which is where Arsenal could swoop in…

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Why are Arsenal interested in signing Bernardo Silva?

Put simply, the Gunners are in desperate need of a playmaker.

Their pursuit of former Real Madrid loanee Martin Odegaard seems to be at an end – and a move for Silva could be the next most realistic option for the North London club.

Arsenal chief Arteta is well aware of the City man’s talents having worked with him extensively during his time as Guardiola’s assistant at the Etihad. 

Of course, it is no secret that Arsenal would love to land Leicester’s £60m-rated James Maddison, but that move is increasingly looking a tough one to get over the line, hence Arteta’s interest in bringing in Silva.

What has Brendan Rodgers said about Arsenal’s interest in James Maddison?

Foxes boss Rodgers has dismissed rumours regarding a switch for Maddison to Arsenal as pure speculation, insisting that – as far as he is concerned – the 24-year-old is going nowhere.

“He’s a busy young guy now, he’s become a father, so he’s changing nappies and everything else,” said Rodgers. “James doesn’t change. He’s a wonderful young guy to work with,” shared Rodgers.

“It is what it is, it’s gossip and speculation, so you can’t get too emotional with all of that.

“He’ll understand it’s the nature of this time of the season, with lots of stories going around. I know he’s very happy here and wants to be here.

“I haven’t spoken to him on it. I don’t need to speak around gossip and speculation. If anything ever comes to the club, Jon Rudkin will tell me straight away and I will deal with it then.”

If Rodgers is accurate in his statement, Silva looks to be a far more attainable target than Maddison at this time.

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What does Bernardo Silva offer Arsenal?

A three-time Premier League winner, Silva has notched 21 goals in 131 top-flight games for City, as well as providing 24 assists. His creative influence could prove vital for an Arsenal side who struggled for fluency in the final third during their last campaign. Valued at around £63m – per Transfermarkt – Silva would be considered very good value if he was to bring his best form to the Emirates. 

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