Mikel Arteta confirms Willian’s exit talks as he moves closer to a return to Brazil with Corinthians, just a year after joining Arsenal from Chelsea…
Arsenal boss Mikel Arteta has confirmed Willian has held talks with Corinthians about a return to Brazil just 12 months after joining the Gunners.
Sports post revealed earlier this week that the former Chelsea star was in talks to join the Brazilian side for free.
Talks were believed to be at an advanced stage with all parties willing to strike a deal and now Arteta has confirmed the news.
Mikel Arteta (right) has confirmed Willian (left) has held talks with Corinthians about a move
Willian was signed as a free agent to a three-year deal last summer but has endured a failed spell with the Emirates.
He made 37 appearances in all competitions last season, scoring just one goal and providing five assists.
Arsenal are expected to let the midfielder leave for free if a deal is struck as they want to take his £190,000-a-week salary off the payroll.
However, Arteta insisted that the 33-year-old’s future is not set in stone.
Willian was signed as a free agent for Arsenal last summer on a three-year deal from Chelsea
The 33-year-old has had an unsuccessful spell with the Emirates and Arsenal are looking to fire him
“We are having some conversations with him and the agent, and we are evaluating the position we are in at the moment,” Arteta said.
‘I do not know [why it hasn’t worked out for him here].
“At the moment he is an Arsenal player and we are trying to get the best out of him while he is here. Everything else is just things that can happen.’
Arsenal are the Premier League’s biggest backer in this transfer window, having spent £129 million on Sambi Lokonga, Ben White, Martin Odegaard, Aaron Ramsdale and Nuno Tavares.
Ben White (right) was one of five newcomers to Arsenal this summer, costing £50m
However, the Gunners boss is not ruling out further arrivals in North London before the transfer window closes next week.
‘We do not know’ [if we will make more signings],’ he said.
“We’ve done a lot already – ins and outs – I think it’s 16 or 17 deals in total, with some extensions, and that’s a lot of things.
“There are still some things to do in the last few days as there are still some question marks and deals that could happen, but we’ll see.”
Arsenal slipped to two consecutive defeats early in their 2021-22 Premier League campaign, making it their worst start to the season in their 118-year history.
Romelu Lukaku opened the scoring on Sunday as Chelsea beat Arsenal 2-0 in the league
However, Arteta’s men gathered to redeem themselves on Wednesday night when they defeated Championship side West Brom 6-0 in the second round of the Carabao Cup.
The Gunners face reigning champions Manchester City this weekend as they aim for their first league win of the season.
Bukayo Saka was beaten in their beating by West Brom and Arteta confirmed the 19-year-old would be checked ahead of Saturday’s trip to the Etihad.