Arsenal

Arsenal handed major £52m Martin Zubimendi transfer incentive amid hidden Kyl

Kylian Mbappe could play a surprising role in Arsenal’s hunt to sign Real Sociedad midfielder Martin Zubimendi. football.london reported in November that the Gunners had been tracking Real Sociedad midfielder Martin Zubimendi ahead of the January transfer window.

Completing a deal in the current trading period always appeared a significant challenge with Sociedad doing well in La Liga and into the knockout stages of the Champions League. Signing a new midfielder was a priority for Mikel Arteta and Edu in previous months, however injuries in defence have since seen that focus switch.

After spending £200million in the summer, funds for the winter window were always going to be minimal which meant any marquee deal being done would need to arrive after selling players or with a loan move. Given the €60million (£52m) release clause in his contract and Arsenal’s reluctance to sell fringe players given their injury issues, neither looked set to occur for Zubimendi.

Nonetheless, laying the groundwork ahead of returning for the midfielder in the summer can be completed with a similar action done for Declan Rice in 2023. And now a major update has been provided by transfer guru Fabrizio Romano on Zubimendi along with how Mbappe can help Arsenal complete the transfer.

“Zubimendi is a player that is really appreciated [by Arsenal], for sure,” he said via GiveMeSport. “But I would also include Bayern Munich in the shortlist of clubs interested in Zubimendi for the summer transfer window. “In January it is really complicated because of the cost of the deal, which is around €60m [£52m], the value of the release clause for Zubimendi.

“But it is also complicated on a personal point of view for Zubimendi because he’s a big Real Sociedad fan, not just a fantastic player. “He wants to keep going with the club, especially with this big opportunity to play in the round of 16 of the Champions League.”

While Arsenal take on Porto in just a few weeks, Sociedad are set to face Paris Saint-Germain in the Champions League across two legs in February with Mbappe likely to play a major role if the French side knock out Zubimendi’s team. Regardless of the outcome of this season’s Champions League, there is a chance Sociedad qualify for next year’s competition with their La Liga finish as they currently sit fifth.

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