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Sociedad aim to keep Asier

Real Sociedad coach Jagoba Arraste has insisted that Arsenal target Asier Illarramendi is not for sale, but is not surprised that so many of his players have attracted interest.

Last Updated: 04/07/13 at 07:17 Post Comment

Asier Illarramendi: Set to return to training

Asier Illarramendi: Set to return to training

The San Sebastian-based outfit finished fourth and qualified for the Champions League next term and that has meant many of their squad have come under the microscope.

"We are not going to pretend that a team that finished fourth and has two players in the Best XI of the Under-21 European Championships is going to have nobody interested in their players. One thing leads to another," Arraste said.

In recent weeks Arsenal have been joined by Real Madrid in being linked with Illarramendi and la Real's trainer admits that the Spanish giants' interest is known.

"It is true that we are talking about one of the biggest clubs in the world, both in economic and sporting terms," he continued.

"However, we are not going to negotiate for him. He is not for sale. The club has made it clear, and I think the player has too, that we are not going to discuss hypothetical situations."

Real Sociedad have seen other players linked with moves away, but Arraste is confident that Illarramendi and several other key players will stay put.

"This is the same as it was with Loren and Aperribay. Illarramendi has said he is very happy here and I have talked to him about in person and is very excited about the coming season," he added.

"There is no plan B for us with him and he will be with us for pre-season training on Thursday.

"We want to maintain the main body of the team and add one or two more players to increase the quality."

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till reckon Chelsea will go for Khedira as back up for Matic. I think it will turn out to be quite a Mourihno-y window: We'll see the squad players and youth in action pre-season, say things like well, we need not buy anybody and then the club will bid £60m for Pogba and send everybody on loan.

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would love to be a fly on the wall at the meeting between Milner and Rodgers. I don't know if flies can count, but if they can then I would be counting the number of times Rodgers used the word outstanding in his attempts to get Milner to sign.

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ell, it wouldn't be a summer without Arsenal fans fretting over losing a key player, and United throwing their weight around and muscling in on transfer deals which are (apparently) near to completion. If we can't be entertained by the football on the pitch, let's enjoy the silly off-pitch soap opera of the transfer season. Hurrah!

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