Chelsea target Achraf Hakimi shows off speed in training
Arsenal and Chelsea both have long-standing interest in Inter Milan star Achraf Hakimi, according to reports. And it’s claimed the Serie A giants are willing to part ways with the 22-year-old for £40million at the end of the campaign. However, a move on deadline day appears out of the question.
Hakimi has impressed at Inter Milan since signing from Real Madrid.
But with the Serie A giants looking to balance the books in the wake of the coronavirus crisis, there are now doubts over his future at the San Siro.
And The Athletic say Arsenal and Chelsea both have long-standing interest in the Morocco international, who has scored six goals and registered five assists this term.
The Gunners reportedly thought about signing Hakimi, after his name featured prominently on their recruitment lists, when he was on loan at Borussia Dortmund.
But his fine performances at the Westfalenstadion saw his value increase and Arsenal, tight on funds, couldn’t afford him.
They thought about going in for Hakimi back in the summer, too.
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But they were unhappy with the price and payment structure regarding a potential deal and, with Mikel Arteta keen to have Hector Bellerin as his first-choice right-back, ended up missing out.
With Chelsea, they too have been interested in Hakimi for a number of years.
But with Reece James shining at the back for the Blues this term, Thomas Tuchel isn’t expected to pursue the Inter star at the current moment in time.
Regardless, either side who goes in for the Moroccan will have to meet Inter’s £40m asking price.
And they’d also have to stump up £75,000-a-week on wages, with Hakimi unwilling to lower his salary demands.
Meanwhile, speaking earlier on Monday, Arsenal boss Arteta admitted his side could strengthen the squad.
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“Well, there are some conversations at the moment going on,” he said.
“I spoke with all of the players about their own situation because they are all aware of the minutes that they are playing and they want to improve their situation.
“I am willing to help them.
“Some of them the club is willing to help them and we will try to find a solution at the end.
“But I don’t know whether it’s going to be the case or not.”
Arteta also hailed former Chelsea star David Luiz, labelling the Brazil international as a ‘joy to work with’.
“No, there are still a few months to go on that,” he said when asked if Arsenal had begun discussing a new deal with Luiz.
“I talk to him all the time about this kind of thing so we’re in a good position. “What I want is for him to keep performing like this to the end of the season.
“It’s credit to him because he trains really hard. This season has been really tough in the beginning because he’s been through some injuries but he’s kept at it, he understood his role, he knows his role in the team, he’s one of our leaders and he’s so willing to keep improving.
“Even at this age he’s always looking at his games and his clips, all the time asking questions. When that happens you can still improve as a player and I think that’s why he’s performing the way he is at the moment.
“David knows the things that he’s really good at and the things where there is still room for improvement.
“He’s a really honest man with himself.
“He’s won everything and it’s a joy to work with him. He showed his character first of all with the decision he made to join the club when he was with a club where he was winning trophies and he was still comfortable and under contract.
“He wanted a challenge and at that age it tells you everything because normally at that age the challenge is not sporting but more a financial decision that you take to go to a different country.
“But David loves this game so much and he wants to keep playing at the highest level in a very competitive league. This is the challenge that he’s enjoying at the moment.”
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