Arsenal given Riccardo Calafiori green light amid Chelsea hijack preparation (2024)

Arsenal are yet to get their summer transfer window truly underway but will start looking to begin making additions to Mikel Arteta's squad sooner rather than later ahead of the 2024/25 campaign.

The Gunners have been linked with a number of stars over the last few weeks, including Manchester United winger Marcus Rashford and Spanish international Nico Williams, after his dazzling displays throughout the 2024 European Championships.

However, with pre-season right around the corner, Arteta and company will be hoping to sort any transfer dealings out ahead of their tour of the U.S in order to have the squad gel as much as possible before taking the challenge back to reigning Premier League champions Manchester City. Here, football.london takes a look at the latest updates...

Calafiori greenlight

Arsenal's pursuit of Bologna defender Riccardo Calafiori has been given the green light by the centre-back, which has kicked off talks between the two clubs. According to Fabrizio Romano, there are no issues with the terms in his proposed contract, and now it's up to all parties involved to negotiate the fees.

A reported sum of £42.3m is what the Gunners are set to pay for the 22-year-old. His impressive displays in the Serie A, as well as at the 2024 Euros, have caught the attention of many clubs around the Premier League, but Arteta's side are set to come out on top for the centre-back.

football.london says: "With Chelsea and Liverpool both also said to be in the running for Calafiori, it's imperative that the Gunners get this deal over the line now.

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"In today's market, £42m for a player of Calafiori's calibre is hard to come across, and he could become a cornerstone of Arsenal's defensive line for a long time coming. While Gabriel and William Saliba have constructed one of the best centre-back partnerships in world football over recent seasons, the addition of Calafiori into the mix could benefit Arsenal in the long term, and with the player onboard, that'll only strengthen their resolve to secure his services.

"Getting ahead of their Premier League rivals will also prove their ability to bounce back from what was a brutal title race finish at the end of last season, bolster up, and move on forward in an attempt to win their first Premier League trophy in 21 years."

Hato hijack

Chelsea are reportedly attempting to hijack Arsenal's long-held plans to sign Ajax starlet Jorrel Hato this summer after the 18-year-old landed on their shortlist with the appointment of Enzo Maresca.

Already full of young talents, the Blues have added Fulham defender Tosin Adarabioyo to their squad this summer and are said to hold interest in Nottingham Forest defender Murillo as well. But now the Stamford Bridge leadership have set their eyes on Hato, who will take a lot of convincing to leave Ajax and his home country in favour of such an inconsistent project at Chelsea.

The Gunners have long been informed about Hato's preference to stay in continental Europe over a move to the Premier League and therefore have centred their targets elsewhere.

football.london says: "This is the kind of move that I doubt will ruffle too many feathers at the Emirates Stadium. Hato is a brilliant talent; there's no denying that, but with their eyes on other prizes, Arteta and Edu won't be too fussed if Hato does end up in blue next season.

"Chelsea have defensive issues to sort out following the departure of Thiago Silva following his stellar four-year stint with the club and could also see Trevoh Chalobah leave this summer, with reports claiming that Hato has been named multiple times as a potential replacement.

"The youngster also signed a new deal in March, making it even harder for Chelsea to do business with the Eredivisie side around the prospect of a move. If anything, Arsenal may encourage the Blues to keep trying to find a deal if it keeps them off the scent of any other moves they themselves are making."

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Arsenal given Riccardo Calafiori green light amid Chelsea hijack preparation (2024)

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