Arsenal have endured another difficult campaign this year, with specific individuals struggling to find their best form and in turn it has led to overall disappointment in their pursuit of major honours.
Among that group has been Hector Bellerin, as the 22-year-old hasn’t quite kicked on as expected following his impressive introduction to the senior side.
The Spaniard has made 36 appearances in all competitions so far this season, but question marks have been raised over his form, especially given he was dropped at Brighton earlier this month.
In turn, it comes as no real surprise to hear of transfer speculation linking him with an exit, with The Daily Mail reporting that the Gunners are open to selling him this summer for £50m, with Man City, Barcelona and Juventus all specifically mentioned as interested parties.
From an Arsenal perspective, it’s also interesting to note that the fee could go towards new signings, with a goalkeeper, midfielder and defender said to be on the transfer wishlist at the end of the season, as per the report.
If Arsenal were able to get £50m for Bellerin, that’s arguably good business. Although he’s still only 22 and could yet improve and develop significantly, that’s a lot of money for a defender which can be reinvested in the squad to address real problems areas.
However, an argument could be made that Arsenal don’t have a proper replacement already available which could be an issue, and so they may well need to add a right-back to that wishlist mentioned above.
With regards to the interested parties though, having signed Kyle Walker last summer it seems nonsensical for Pep Guardiola to swoop for his compatriot. In contrast, with an ageing Stephan Lichtsteiner and an injury-prone Mattia De Sciglio, Juventus could certainly do with addressing that area of the pitch.
It’s a similar story for Barcelona, with summer signing Nelson Semedo failing to hold down that position for himself, and so rather than go with the versatile Sergi Roberto out of his natural position, a return for Bellerin to the club he came through the youth ranks with could be a sensible option for both parties.