Arsenal closing in on £24m transfer after agreeing Martin Odegaard deal

Arsenal are closing in on £24m transfer deal for Sheffield United goalkeeper Aaron Ramsdale, having already reached an agreement with Real Madrid to sign Martin Odegaard.

On Tuesday, reports claimed the Gunners had agreed a deal with Spanish giants Madrid to sign Odegaard on a permanent transfer.

The Norway international spent six months on loan at the Emirates last season and is now set to return to north London for a fee of around £30m.

Odegaard will not be the only new signing to arrive at Arsenal in the coming days, with The Athletic reporting that Ramsdale is also set to join Mikel Arteta’s squad.

It is claimed Arsenal are on the verge of finalising an agreement with Championship club Sheffield United to pay an initial £24m for Ramsdale, with a possible further £6m in add-ons should he establish himself as the club’s first-choice goalkeeper.

Despite suffering two Premier League relegations – first with Bournemouth and more recently with Sheffield United – Ramsdale has emerged as a key Arsenal target this summer.

The Blades initially valued Ramsdale at around £40m but have slashed their asking price in recent days, with Arsenal now set to bring him to north London to offer cover and competition for Bernd Leno.

Germany international Leno has largely flattered to deceive since joining Arsenal from Bundesliga club Bayer Leverkusen in 2018 and was criticised after the club’s dismal opening-day defeat to Brentford.

The Athletic say Ramsdale will sign a four-year contract at Arsenal, with an option of a fifth year, having been left out of Sheffield United’s clash against West Brom on Wednesday night.

Arsenal hope to register both Ramsdale and Odegaard in time to be part of their squad to face London rivals Chelsea on Sunday.

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When Arsenal were first linked with a move for Ramsdale, club hero Nigel Winterburn admitted he had ‘doubts’ over the goalkeeper.

‘If I’m completely honest, I don’t think that Aaron Ramsdale is a step up on Bernd Leno,’ the Gunners legend told GentingBet last month.

‘People are criticising Leno saying that he’s not good enough. It is clear that we let the best goalkeeper go in Martinez, but I understand why Arsenal let him go, because he was a player for Arsenal that spent time at the club, never got a run in a team.

‘When he got a run in the team, he was absolutely sensational. And I just wonder if the coaching staff thought, “he can’t continue the way he’s going”. But he clearly has.

‘But with regards to Ramsdale, he’s just not Arsenal’s solution for their number one goalkeeper. I’ve watched him play several times last season. I just have my doubts and I don’t know why. And at £30m, it’s a huge amount of money.

‘If they sign him, I’ll shake his hand and say, “I hope I’m completely wrong.” He’d probably knock me out, but that won’t be the first time.’

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