Edu driving Arsenal deal for next Martinelli as £8.5million offer could see transfer done this week

Ciaran McCarthy
Bitello, Gremio, April 2023
Bitello during game for Gremio

Arsenal are in talks with Gremio over midfielder Bitello, and the club feel he could follow a similar path to Gabriel Martinelli, with an £8.5million offer potentially enough.

The Gunners are making a lot of big moves this summer. Signing Kai Havertz for £65million from local rivals Chelsea is a statement, as is the £105million snare of Declan Rice, who all of the Premier League wanted.

Jurrien Timber is less of a huge deal, but still a well-known player who will impact the side.

However, Mikel Arteta is looking to a more understated transfer, too. Yesterday (July 12) it was reported Arsenal had representatives in Brazil, discussing a deal for midfielder Bitello, as well as watching him in Copa do Brasil action.

Both of those things seem to have gone positively from their perspective, as it seems they’re ready to push the deal through.

Indeed, 90min reports talks are ongoing, and it’s believed ‘a deal could be struck this week’. There’s also an apparent belief that Gremio are ‘prepared to accept’ an offer of £8.5million for Bitello.

The Arsenal interest in the youngster is driven by Edu, who has ‘used his contacts in his homeland to target him and line up a prospective deal’.

It’s felt the situation will be a similar one to Arsenal signing Martinelli in 2019. He signed for £6million as an 18-year-old, with the Gunners identifying his potential from that early age.

Bitello is older (23) than Martinelli was when he walked through the door at the Emirates, but has gone somewhat under the radar. Arsenal seemingly feel the midfielder can make an impact in the Premier League, as Martinelli has despite having little experience before he made the move to Europe.

While Martinelli wasn’t a hit straight away, he’s become one of the most influential players in the Gunners’s side. His 15 goals were the joint most of any Arsenal player last season, and he also provided five assists.

As such, they’ll hope Bitello can develop into a useful asset during his time at the club, if he is to be signed.

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