Arsenal put ‘money on the table’ as they ‘go all out’ against Chelsea to hijack Liverpool transfer

Joe Williams
Chelsea and Arsenal transfer target Nico Williams
Nico Williams has been linked to Chelsea and Arsenal.

Arsenal have made a proposal to both Athletic Bilbao and Nico Williams as they look to sign the Spain winger ahead of Chelsea, according to reports.

The Gunners are looking to sign a new winger in the summer transfer market to help provide alternative options for Mikel Arteta during matches next season.

Napoli’s Khvicha Kvaratskhelia and Wolves’ Pedro Neto are among the wingers who have been linked with a move to the Emirates Stadium this summer.

But reports in Spain insist that it is Williams who is attracting the most attention from Arsenal with the Gunners ‘putting money on the table, both for the club and for the player’.

Arsenal and Chelsea are ‘going all out for the winger’ this summer, while Barcelona are apparently ‘having a hard time signing’ the Spain international.

While both Arsenal and Chelsea are ‘bidding’ for Williams, it is the Blues who are ‘willing to pay’ his €58m release clause in his contract at Athletic Bilbao.

Chelsea are ‘offering the player a contract of 15 million euros, three times more than what he earns at Athletic’ and ‘time is running out’ for Barcelona ‘because the pressure from English clubs is increasing.’

Williams, who has been in great form for Spain at Euro 2024, will have ‘his future will be resolved before the end of July’ with reports yesterday also linking Liverpool to the winger.

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The report insisted that Liverpool will ‘pay full release clause’ and that they are ready to ‘knock out’ Barcelona in the race to sign Williams.

Charles Watts, who has been covering Arsenal for years, insists the Gunners “won’t do anything stupid” to sign Williams over the summer as they look to protect their wage structure.

Watts wrote in his Caught Offside column: “If Nico Williams wasn’t already in the shop window ahead of Euro 2024, then he certainly is now.

“The Athletic Club winger has been electric for Spain and understandably he now has a lot of people talking about him as a potential transfer target this summer.

“Arsenal are admirers of the 21-year-old, but so are plenty of other of the top clubs across Europe and that interest is only going to increase as the tournament goes on.

“On paper, the release clause of around £50million for Williams looks a very appealing one, but as far as I’m aware it’s not as simple as that.

“You have to remember that release clauses in Spain have to be paid in full and that makes deals very expensive as clubs can’t spread the transfer fee out over the length of the contract like they usually do.

“But in Williams’ case, the wages are also understood to be a pretty significant issue. Athletic Club are big payers. They have to be to ensure they keep their team together given the unique way the club operates.

“So Williams is on good money and the word is that interested clubs have been surprised by the wages he would want to move this summer.

“Arsenal are good payers, but they have a wage bill that they have worked hard to get in check in recent years. So they won’t do anything stupid and undo that hard work.

“Williams is a talent, but he is still young and relatively inexperienced. For Arsenal to immediately make him one of the highest earners would be a risk, because it could unsettle the squad a bit, especially if he were to come in and suddenly be earning more than some of the experienced players who have been at the club for a while. So all that sort of thing has to be taken into account when it comes to potential deals.

“Williams is a huge talent and is a player I would love to see at Arsenal. He ticks a lot of boxes when it comes to what the club needs right now. But it has to be a deal that works financially. If it’s not, then there are plenty of other players out there.”