11pm Arsenal transfer news LIVE: Aubameyang ‘hopes to join Barcelona’, Maitland-Niles EXIT, Lacazette to Juventus – The Sun

ARSENAL head into their home game against Liverpool knowing a win will be required for them to have any chance of qualifying for Europe via the league route.

And the Gunners will also be hoping they can convince captain Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang to stay at the club amid rumours he is looking to join Barcelona.

Get all the latest news and transfer gossip from North London here…

  • OZIL'S BATTLE ROAR

    Defiant Mesut Ozil insists he is fit and ready as Arsenal prepare to host champions Liverpool on Wednesday night.

    That's the only way of reading this short, sharp and arguably sweet tweet from the German midfielder.

  • I AIN'T GUNNER GET A CHANCE

    Versatile starletAinsley Maitland-Niles has reportedly accepted his Arsenal career is over.

    The 22-year-old has barely featured under boss Mikel Arteta with The Athletic reporting that he “senses a lack of trust in him” from the boss.

    The England Under-21 wideman “would welcome the chance to explore a fresh opportunity away from his boyhood club”.

    Maitland-Niles has a contract that runs until the summer of 2023, but he thinks “it would be best for both parties if a resolution was found” for him to leave.

    Last month SunSport exclusively revealed that the Gunners are willing to sell Maitland-Niles to bring in funds for new faces — but want a staggering £20million.

    Boss Arteta may also sacrifice some of the young players who are already attracting interest in the transfer market.

    Emile Smith Rowe is fancied by a few, but it would also take a big offer to shift the 19-year-old prospect who has been on loan with Huddersfield Town this season.

  • KOUL ON HIS FUTURE

    Napoli centre-back Kalidou Koulibaly, linked with Arsenal, Manchester United and Newcastle over the summer, admits his future is up in the air.

    He told Gazzetta dello Sport: “In football, you never know what happens.

    “I never spoke to Napoli about leaving. If we have to find a solution, we will find it, but I have never talked about the transfer market.

    “I also read in the newspapers about my future. But I only want to think about playing, 

    “I am 100 per cent [committed to] Napoli and it bothers me to be linked, every day, to this or that European club.”

  • GUNNERS' PART-ING SHOT

    Arsenal are again being linked with Atletico Madrid midfielder Thomas Partey.

    With Real Madrid loanee Dani Ceballos and outcast Matteo Guendouzi facing an uncertain future, Mikel Arteta is reportedly still monitoring the Ghana midfielder.

    The 27-year-old, who has also been linked with Inter Milan, has a £44.8million release clause.

    He told Passione,: “I can say that right now, I haven’t talked to anyone, even if Inter are a top club.

    “There’s a €50m (£44.8m) release clause in his contract, a figure that’s cheap for a player like Thomas.”

  • BACK MUST BE FRONT OF ARTETA'S PLANS

    Former England B forward Kevin Campbell believes defence and midfield are priority areas to strengthen for old club Arsenal.

    He said: “I could see three players coming to Arsenal, dependent on recruitment and transfer budget – I’m not sure what’s going to happen and I’m not sure who Arteta is looking at.

    “I could take Thomas Partey in midfield, from Atletico Madrid and Adrien Rabiot from Juventus.

    “I’d love to see Kalidou Koulibaly at the back as Arsenal struggle with quick forwards and Koulibaly is quick and an excellent defender.

    “That’s the position, especially after the North London derby, where we need someone who can cover ground pretty well.”

  • GUNNERS NEED PARTEY, RABIOT, KOULIBALY

    Ex-Arsenal striker Kevin Campbell wants to see “four or five” major signings to launch them back up the Premier League.

    As Mikel Arteta's side struggle to qualify for next season's Europa League, the former Everton ace believes Thomas Partey and Adrien Rabiot could fix the Gunners' midfield – with Kalidou Koulibaly an ideal recruit in defence.

    He wrote for GentingBet: “Arsenal need four or five players across the board.

    “They need centre-halves, I can see them going for one or two players in that position.

    “They also need central midfielders, and more energy across the midfield and either another striker or a wide player.”

  • NILES BETTER IF I MOVED

    Wideman Ainsley Maitland-Niles believes he must quit Arsenal for regular first-team football, reports say.

    The Athletic's David Ornstein suggests the wideman, 22, feels boss Mikel Arteta lacks faith in him.

    Rival clubs at home and in Germany are reportedly interested in the England Under-21 star.

    The Londoner has been with the Gunners six years.

  • UM READY TO MOVE

    Barcelona are reportedly ready to loan out Arsenal target Samuel Umtiti this summer.

    Spanish outlet Sport claims the French centre-back is not in Barca’s future plans.

    And Umtiti will be allowed to depart on loan with the view to completing a permanent deal in 2021.

    The former Lyon man, 26, has spent four years at Barcelona and won two titles.

  • OZIL STILL OUT

    Arsenal midfielder Mesut Ozil will miss the Liverpool game as his back problem has still not cleared up.

    The German, who has been strongly rumoured with a summer exit, has not played any minutes since the season resumed.

    And picking up £350,000-a-week in wages, many Gunners fans hope he can finally be shunted out the door.

    Boss Mikel Arteta was asked whether the 31-year-old is back in contention for Wednesday's home game against champions Liverpool.

    He responded: “With Mesut the situation is still the same as it was.”

    Before Ozil picked up the injury, Arteta had said he was dropped for “tactical reasons”.

  • GUNNERS IN KOREA

    Martyn Williams, a researcher who monitors North Korean TV, has explained the league’s latest territorial breakthrough.

    He told Pen News: “Liverpool and Man United seem to get more exposure.

    “The last five games shown, for example, were: Liverpool v Man United, Man United v Norwich, Man City v Everton, Liverpool v Wolves, and Man City v Man United.

    He added: “[It is] pretty much the only foreign content on air right now. This is interesting because it's a new window on the world for North Koreans.”

  • FOOTBALL'S COMMIE HOME

    The Premier League has long succeeded in taking English football to some far-off lands, now including North Korea.

    While citizens would be risking a death sentence to indulge in foreign films, there is now no punishment for catching an English top-flight match.

    The separatist country’s communist leaders are said to have switched on the Premier League’s broadcasts late last year.

    And North-West rivals Manchester United and Liverpool are making early strides as the region’s most popular teams.

  • COUT ME IN

    Barcelona have reportedly offered Philippe Coutinho to Arsenal and Newcastle as they look to fund a move for Inter Milan star Lautaro Martinez.

    Goal claims Brazilian flop Coutinho, 28, who was also linked wiht Chelsea, has no future at the Nou Camp after returning from an unsuccessful loan at Bayern Munich.

    He has failed to replicate the form that saw Barca pay £110million to Liverpool in 2018.

    And with Real Madrid set to reclaim the La Liga title, Catalan chiefs are ready to axe Coutinho as they eye a spending spree this summer.

    Inter Milan striker Martinez, 22, is Barcelona’s top target after a move to re-sign Neymar from Paris Saint-Germain was ruled out.

    And no less than NINE players are set to be sacrificed to bring in crucial transfer funds.

    But the Gunners would struggle t finance the deal, while Newcastle are still sweating over their potential £300m Saudi takeover.

  • WERD IT ON THE GRAPEVINE

    Arsenal star Konstantinos Mavropanos is wanted on a season-long loan deal by Werder Bremen, according to reports.

    The Gunners' Greek centre-back is said to be wanted by five clubs.

    But it is the Bundesliga side who look most likely to land him, say Football London.

    Stuttgart are also rumoured to be interested in a move.

  • TIES IN THE CITY

    Arsenal boss Mikel Arteta has given his thoughts on yesterday's CAS ruling that his former club Manchester City will NOT be banned from next season's Champions League.

    He said: “There is no question about what happened. They completely deserved to be in the Champions League because what they have done on the pitch is unquestionable.

    “The regulators have looked at it and have decided that they haven't done anything wrong so you have the two aspects that are really clear and transparent.

    “They are going to be in the Champions League because they deserve it for what they have done on the pitch and what they have done outside of the pitch.

  • OUT FOR THE COUT

    Barcelona have offered out-of-favour playmaker Philippe Coutinho to Newcastle United and Arsenal, according to reports.

    The LaLiga giants are desperate to fund a summer swoop for Inter Milan striker Lautaro Martinez.

    And according to Goal, former Liverpool star Coutinho could be headed to the Premier League, with the Gunners and Magpies mulling over the situation.

  • BUILDING FROM THE BACK

    Gunners boss Mikel Arteta has today spoken about his side's leaky defence.

    The Spaniard said: “It is a collective game, but within that there are a lot of individual games that happen and a lot of sequencing throughout the 95 minutes that we play.

    “Individual errors are part of football, you can make them and they can go unnoticed if something doesn't happen, and obviously those resulting in a goal the highlight goes there. I am not concerned about that, that is something we will sort.

    “Obviously short-term it is more difficult to do it, what happens after you make an individual error, how you react to that, how you keep trying and your mindset to keep continuing the game to try to put that one back and try to resolve the situation and win it.

    “It is not just the player who makes the individual error, but the rest have to react to try to help the player who has done it. But yes, we got punished big time the other day with that and we have to learn – and you know that teams are expecting that sometimes as well, and we cannot give them anything.”

  • IN A MES

    Arsenal boss Mikel Arteta was brief when asked today about whether Mesut Ozil will play again this season.

    The Spaniard said: “With Mesut the situation is still the same as it was.”

  • JUVE GOT TO BE KIDDING

    Italian giants Juventus are interested in signing Alexandre Lacazette, according to reports.

    The French striker has had a disappointing season at Arsenal, but showed a glimpse of his best on Sunday when he drove an unstoppable shot past Tottenham goalkeeper Hugo Lloris.

    And Corriere dello Sport claim that Maurizio Sarri's side see enough in Lacazette, 29, to replace Gonzalo Higuain in their frontline next season.

  • HOLY GREAL

    Former Scotland international Craig Burley has called on Arsenal to sign Aston Villa star Jack Grealish.

    The 48-year-old said: “I think you're looking at Man United. Arsenal… I think he would improve Arsenal, he'd certainly improve Tottenham.

    “Those are the types of clubs [that he would suit].”

  • TEAM NEWS

    Arsenal have announced that they have no new injury concerns ahead of tomorrow's match with champions Liverpool.

    The Gunners will again be without Calum Chambers (knee), Bernd Leno (knee), Pablo Mari (ankle) and Gabriel Martinelli (knee).

    Mesut Ozil is being assessed after complaining of back soreness – while Eddie Nketiah will serve the second of his three-match ban.

  • KONSTANT MOVEMENT

    Arsenal star Konstantinos Mavropanos is wanted on a season-long loan deal by Werder Bremen, according to reports.

    The Gunners' Greek centre-back is said to be wanted by five clubs.

    But it is the Bundesliga side who look most likely to land him, say Football London.

    Stuttgart are also rumoured to be interested in a move.

  • HAVEN'T THE WILL

    Chelsea winger Willian has reportedly rejected a move to Inter Miami, in a boost to potential suitors Arsenal and Spurs.

    The Brazilian's Blues deal is set to expire at the end of the season – with it looking increasingly unlikely that he will sign on to stay at Stamford Bridge.

    But according to the Telegraph, his future DOES lie in the Premier League, with the 31-year-old reluctant to leave London.

  • Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang is keen to quit Arsenal and join Barcelona, according to reports.

    Mundo Deportivo claim the Gunners captain is Barca's Plan B if they fail to snap up Lautaro Martinez, but an increasingly appealing option.

    The Catalans reportedly do not have the funds available to offer Inter a £65m plus Junior Firpo deal for Martinez, let alone match his £100m release clause.

    Aubameyang, whose contract expires in 2021, would therefore prove a bargain in comparison.

    Meanwhile, Mikel Arteta has insisted nothing has changed regarding Mesut Ozil after the German was again omitted from the Gunners matchday squad.

    Commenting on Ozil, Arteta said: “He’s still in the same position as he was last week or two weeks ago.

    “And we said that we would manage everything internally.”

    Pressed on what exactly he meant by that, he added: “That I have nothing to say.”

    And Corriere Torino report that Juventus will choose between the signings of Alexandre Lacazette or Arkadiusz Milik this summer.

    The Old Lady have reportedly agreed terms with Milik but not with his club Napoli, and could instead turn to Lacazette, particularly if Aubameyang stays with Arsenal.

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