Arsenal identify Emi Buendia ‘alternative’ after losing out to Aston Villa

Arsenal have identified their ‘alternative’ for Emi Buendia after missing out on the midfielder to Aston Villa.

The Gunners appeared to be in prime position to land the Argentine, who scored 15 goals and made 17 assists last season to help Norwich win Premier League promotion.

But they were beaten to his signature by the West Midlands side, confirming a deal on Tuesday for £35m on Tuesday.

It means that Arsenal have a double problem as the man Buendia was going to replace, Martin Odegaard, is supposed to be heading back to Real Madrid after his loan spell.

This will leave a big gap in the midfield for Mikel Arteta to fill – but CBS Sport have reported that the Spaniard has identified his man.

Hakan Calhanoglu will be at the end of his AC Milan contract in a couple of weeks’ time, having failed to take up an extension offer from the Serie A side yet.

It has seen the attacking midfielder also receive a lucrative offer from Qatar but it has not stopped other clubs such as Manchester United registering interest.

But the report states that the Turkish International, preparing for Euro 2020 with his country, is seen as an ‘alternative’ should Odegaard negations fail.

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The young Norwegian, who grabbed two goals and two assists in his 20 games on loan from Madrid, has expressed interest in staying with the North London side previously.

While Edu remains ‘convinced’ he can get an extension from Madrid, the return of Carlo Ancelotti – who was manager when the 22-year-old arrived from Stromsgodset in 2014 at 16 years old.

Speaking about the return of the Italian boss to Madrid, the midfielder said: “It is a coach I know and with whom I had a good relationship when he was last there. In that sense, it is positive.

“But beyond that, one day has passed, so I do not know too much about what he thinks about things.”

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