Arsenal ‘shocked at U-turn’ as £55m target explains snub, Romano comments on new ‘agreement’

Lewis Oldham
Arsenal transfer target Benjamin Sesko
Benjamin Sesko has been linked with a move to the Emirates Stadium.

Arsenal have reportedly been left ‘shaken’ after being snubbed at the ’11th-hour’ by RB Leipzig forward Benjamin Sesko, who has penned a new contract.

The Gunners spent around £65m to sign Kai Havertz from Premier League rivals Chelsea last summer and the Germany international grew into the season as he emerged as Mikel Arteta’s first-choice No.9.

Arsenal miss out on Sesko…

Despite this, Arsenal are expected to sign a new forward this summer with Gabriel Jesus and Eddie Nketiah linked with moves elsewhere.

Sesko emerged as Arsenal’s top target after he scored 14 goals in his 31 Bundesliga appearances during his debut season for RB Leipzig.

The 21-year-old was initially expected to leave RB Leipzig this summer as there is a £55m release clause in his contract and he was attracting interest from the Premier League, with Chelsea and Manchester United mooted as other potential destinations.

But these clubs must look elsewhere as Sesko has made the surprising decision to remain at RB Leipzig as he’s signed a new contract.

A report from Caught Offside claims Arsenal have been left ‘shaken by this 11th-hour U-turn’.

‘CaughtOffside sources with knowledge of the situation, that has come as an almighty shock to the Gunners, who had almost convinced him on personal terms before his final decision was made public.

‘The Gunners had not been informed in advance by Sesko of his decision, and with the player rejecting some attempts from Saudi Arabia a few weeks ago too, Arsenal clearly felt they were in pole position.

‘New contacts between Arsenal and the player’s agent were scheduled for the next few days, but Sesko’s future – at least in the short term – has now been defined.’

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Sesko has explained why he decided to commit his future to RB Leipzig.

“The early contract extension was therefore the logical next step for me,” Sesko said.

He added: “I feel a lot of trust and appreciation throughout the club and that is crucial for being able to perform to my full potential. In the second half of the season in particular, I was able to give something back with my goals.

“We have a team with great potential and a balanced mix of young and experienced players. I’m really looking forward to taking the next steps with this team.”

Transfer expert Fabrizio Romano meanwhile has commented on Sesko’s new “gentleman’s agreement” with RB Leipzig over a future transfer.

“In Sesko’s new contract, there is a gentleman’s agreement for him, between the player, the club, and his agents, to leave the club in 2025 or 2026 under different conditions than the €65m clause that was there this summer,” Romano said.

“It’s not a new clause, but a gentleman’s agreement, something discussed privately, so let’s see if they decide to share that information at any point.”

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