£26.5m teen ‘proud’ of Arsenal links as he learns English ahead of ‘historic sale’

Will Ford
Man Utd target Fresneda

Arsenal target Ivan Fresneda is “proud” of reports linking him with the Gunners as he learns English and German ahead of a summer transfer from Real Vallodolid.

Mikel Arteta was keen on bringing Fresneda to the Emirates in January but Vallodolid stood firm as they didn’t want to lose him mid-season.

But as CBS Sports journalist Ben Jacobs explained back in February, Arsenal remain interested in the teenager.

“Arsenal will look at a right-back this summer to add a bit of depth and plan for the long term,” he said.

“Arsenal’s priority remains Ivan Fresneda, who they tried to sign in January.  Fresneda opted to stay at Real Valladolid until the end of the season despite offers from both the Gunners and Borussia Dortmund.

“Fresneda’s agent Luis Bardaji actually said up to 30 teams had made enquiries for the 18-year-old. Newcastle were also tracking him.”

Arsenal have reportedly been joined by Juventus and Borussia Dortmund in the race for the 18-year-old, ahead of what will be an “historic sale” this summer according to his agent.

Fresneda was asked about the transfer rumours while on international duty with the Spain U19s, and also confirmed he is learning both English and German with a view to the future.

He told AS (via Sport Witness): “I’m proud, but I always say it: I’m also at a big club, Valladolid.

“I have always valued studies with a view to the future, beyond football. I am a person who likes to learn languages.”

Fresneda is reported to have a £26.5m release clause in his contract which is thought to put Arsenal in the driving seat to sign him ahead of Juventus and Dortmund, as they have a financial advantage over those rivals.

Asked which top right-backs he admires, Fresneda picked out two England internationals.

He added: “It is a fashionable position that today is valued much more than before and there are real great players. Achraf [Hakimi], Reece James and Alexander-Arnold are three of the ones I like the most.”

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