Unai Emery gives Arsenal green light to seal £60 million Umtiti deal after opening up on Frenchman
Arsenal boss Unai Emery has praised Barcelona star Samuel Umtiti amid speculation that the Gunners are looking to seal a £60 million transfer deal in the summer.
Umtiti signed for Barcelona way back in 2016 and has become an integral part of the Spaniards side over the past few seasons, but there has been a lot of speculation that he could be sold to help finance a move for Ajax superstar defender Matthijs De Ligt, as the Dutchman is one of the most highly-regarded defenders in world football and has a number of top clubs chasing a possible deal, but it is believed that he would prefer a move to the Spanish Champions rather than a move to the Premier League or PSG.
And that has led to recent speculation that Barcelona are willing to let Umtiti leave in the summer transfer window and will demand around £60 million for his services, as they will use the funds to complete the deal for De Ligt.
However, Spanish website Marca claimed that Umtiti has no intention of leaving Barcelona at the end of the season and wants to win back his place in the starting line-up, believing he can oust Clement Lenglet from the team once he has fully recovered from his knee injury and prove that Barca do not need to spend as much as £75m on De Ligt.
But Emery has opened the door back-up to a potential summer deal after praising the Frenchman, and ultimately hinting that a possible deal could happen in the summer window.
‘He’s a very good player,’ Emery told RMC Sport.
‘I’ve always had French players in my teams. At Valencia, Sevilla, PSG and here at Arsenal. ‘I’ve always been able to count on those players.’
Will Umtiti come to the Premier League?
Arsenal are one of the biggest clubs in world football and have the same kind of playing style as Barcelona, so signing Umtiti in the summer would mean that he would not have to adjust to the style of play Emery likes to employ at the Emirates.
However, it would have been a massive shock to see him actually depart the Spanish giants at the end of the season.