CEO says he sold his ‘perfect’ player to another club even though Arsenal offered more money

Sassuolo CEO Giovanni Carnevali has revealed that he accepted Juventus’ offer for Manuel Locatelli even though Arsenal’s bid was bigger.

The Italy international was a wanted man a few years ago. Arsenal were really keen to sign him, but he chose Juventus in the end. Carnevali has now revealed why he rejected the Gunners’ proposal.

Sassuolo CEO says he rejected Arsenal’s bid for Manuel Locatelli
Arsenal were very active in the summer transfer window before the start of the 2021/22 season.

Mikel Arteta was finally given the resources to spend big on his squad, and he brought in the likes of Ben White, Aaron Ramsdale, Albert Sambi Lokonga and Nuno Tavares among others.

Arsenal were desperate to sign one more midfielder that summer – Manuel Locatelli. They thought he was ‘perfect‘ for them.

The Italian was still at Sassuolo at the time and was one of the best midfielders in the Serie A. He was absolutely fantastic in his final season at the Citta del Tricolore, and a number of clubs wanted to sign him.

Arsenal pushed as hard as they could and even tabled an offer to get him. The Gunners’ proposal was a better one than that of Juventus, but Carnevali had to choose the Old Lady’s bid in the end. He has now explained why.

Speaking on the Storie di Serie A series, he said: “There are two players to whom I feel particularly attached, Frattesi and Locatelli. They are two boys that I tried to please when they were transferred.

“The economic side of a transfer is important, but not decisive. For example, Locatelli absolutely wanted to go to Juventus, we satisfied him even though we gave up the financial aspect because there was interest from another club, Arsenal.”

Locatelli was wrong to snub Arsenal
Back in 2021, Arsenal weren’t what they are right now.


The Gunners had just finished eighth in the Premier League and had missed out on European football. They were being criticised left, right and centre by people who just couldn’t understand Mikel Arteta’s project.

Locatelli was perhaps one of them, and he snubbed Arsenal and joined Juventus. He finished fourth and seventh in his first two seasons there and is nowhere near winning the league this year either.

Arsenal, on the other hand, have become one of the best teams in Europe, and almost every player in the world would love to be a part of Arteta’s side now.

We don’t know what Locatelli will say if you asked him today, but we feel he must be regretting his decision to reject Arsenal.

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