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Arsenal face battle to sign Bitello as transfer talks intensify

Arsenal face a battle to sign Bitello as the midfielder is attracting interest from several clubs in Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Turkey, and Russia ahead of a possible move before their transfer windows close, according to 90min.

The Gunners had been strongly linked with the 23-year-old during the summer window and 90min claims that the clubs sporting director Edu held talks with Gremio over a potential deal.

A move failed to materialise but Arsenal have continued to monitor the South American ahead of a possible move in January when Gremio may be more open to selling once their season is over.

However, it appears Arsenal may face stiff competition and they could miss out altogether as 90min says that several clubs are eyeing a late move for Bitello while some transfer windows remain open.

The report says a number of clubs are in talks with the 23-year-old’s representative, however, a move to the Saudi Pro League is highly unlikely as their transfer window will close on Thursday. Clubs in Qatar, Russia, and Turkey can still try to lure the Brazilian to join them with their windows shutting in the middle of the month.

Gremio are under no pressure to sell one of their best players after turning down offers from AS Monaco and Feyenoord, while Lyon have also expressed strong interest in Bitello.

Gremio coach Renato Portaluppi claims that he speaks with Bitello regularly and is counting on him to stay at the club. He missed Gremio’s last game due to injury but he has joined the Brazil national team ahead of their upcoming games.

“I’ve been talking a lot with Bitello. He complained of muscle pain on Wednesday and Thursday. It would be too risky for us to bring him into the game,” said Renato.

“I can count on him. I always count. He’s an important player, he knows that. I talk to him almost daily. You said that the window has closed, closed for some countries. Not all.”

Top talent

Bitello has forged a reputation as one of the best young talents in Brazil following his outstanding performances for Gremio over the past few seasons.

He has racked up 92 appearances across all competitions, scored 17 goals, and provided eight assists. This season, he has been ever-present for his side as they currently lie 3rd in the Campeonato Brasileiro Série A with 39 points.

The versatile forward has netted eight times and resisted five assists in 42 games in all competitions. Bitello, who has two years left on his contract with Gremio, is valued at just £6m by Transfermarkt but it would take a much higher fee to get a deal done.

Read more: Arsenal ‘flop’ on verge of sealing move as Gunners get £250k-a-week wages off the books

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