Darren Bent feels that Arsenal “just wouldn’t sell” Bukayo Saka even for £150million if Liverpool were to bid that in order to replace Mohamed Salah with him.
The Reds are in a difficult spot in that Al-Ittihad are attempting to prise away star man Salah. Jurgen Klopp’s side have turned down an offer north of £100million, but reports suggest the Saudi side could go as high as £200million.
That would be a world-record fee, and would surely be hard for any side to turn down. If Liverpool did accept it, they’d have their pick of most forwards on the planet, and Paul Merson thinks they should go after Saka.
Indeed, the pundit has suggested Liverpool should test Arsenal’s resolve with a bid of £150million for the young English star.
Former Premier League striker Bent doesn’t believe the Gunners would sell him even for that astronomical price.
“No. Arsenal just wouldn’t sell him. Arsenal would say no,” he said on talkSPORT.
The pundit followed that up by suggesting there is nobody they would want to replace him with.
“Every player has got a price on their head, of course, but for £150million, I can’t see Arsenal wanting to sell because who would you replace him with?” Bent added.
Saka and Salah are very comparable at the moment. The Arsenal man scored 14 Premier League goals and provided 11 assists last season in a side that finished second in the league.
While Salah scored 19 times and assisted 12 goals, he’s nine years older than Saka, who is only 22. That the Gunners star is already so close to the level of the Liverpool stalwart shows a huge amount of promise, that will only grow over the years.
As such, Bent might well be right that there is nobody else in that bracket other than those two players, and even though Arsenal would be getting a huge sum, they’d not have anybody to spend it on.
The pundit reiterated how important Saka is to Arsenal’s project as they look to go a step further than last season’s second-placed finish.
“I don’t think they would, not in the way Arsenal are trying to get through this season. I can’t see it,” Bent added.
Liverpool are not likely to sell Salah without knowing for definite they’ll be able to snare a direct replacement, but if there’s nobody else Arsenal could go for, that would be the same for Liverpool if they aren’t to budge on the Saka sale.