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Willian still seems most likely to move to Arsenal on a free transfer this summer, running down his Chelsea deal despite a recent upturn in form.
The Athletic report that a move to Arsenal this summer is the most likely scenario for Willian right now. Chelsea wanted to keep the winger, but only on a two-year deal, and talks broke down after he asked for three.
The club are still hopeful of an extension, according to Frank Lampard. However, sources close to the player claim there are no negotiations ongoing over a new deal. The only recent talks were for the short-term extension and Willian still wants a three-year deal.
That leaves Arsenal in the best position to pick up the winger on a free transfer.
In terms of his attacking output, Willian is in great form at the moment. He’s scored or assisted in four of his last five games to put his total at 20 goal contributions for the season.
Personally, I’m less worried about his age than some Arsenal fans. He’s still clearly showing strong form, and his injury record is exceptional. My concern would be more about how Mikel Arteta would actually use the 31-year-old.
Willian can play on the left, and he has done in the past. But he’s spent much more of this season on the right, including through the entirety of his recent run of form.
Arsenal already have Nicolas Pepe for the right-wing, so it seems wasteful to invest there over other positions. Even if the investment is only in wages and a signing-on fee.
It’s surely too early to be thinking about selling Reiss Nelson to make room, so bringing in Willian would stunt his progress too. It’s not a bad signing, in my eyes, just a bit of a wasteful one.