Arsenal are considering a player swap deal that would bring Nicolo Barella to the club.
According to Italian publication Calciomercatoweb, Arsenal are interested in signing Inter Milan midfielder Nicolo Barella, and may be prepared to offer Takehiro Tomiyasu in a swap deal for the player. Folarin Balogun could also be used as a makeweight to get an agreement over the line.
Tomiyasu joined Arsenal in a £19.8 million move from Bologna in 2021. The Japanese defender has regularly impressed when he has played for the Gunners, but injuries have restricted his game time, and he has gradually slipped down the pecking order at the Emirates Stadium.
Tomiyasu’s versatility makes him a useful option for Mikel Arteta to have, but the likes of Ben White, Jurrien Timber, William Saliba, and Oleksandr Zinchenko are all more likely to start ahead of him. Jakub Kiwior will also expect more opportunities this season, which could come at the expense of Tomiyasu, too.
The chance to swap the 24-year-old for a player of Barella’s stature is one Arsenal would have to take.
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Who is Nicolo Barella?
Barella is one of the stand out players in Serie A, and has previously been dubbed “one of the premium midfielders in the world,” by pundit Ale Moreno, as quoted by ESPN.
Adding Barella to an Arsenal midfield contingent already boasting the likes of Declan Rice and Thomas Partey in its ranks would represent a huge statement of intent. Competition for places would surely be fierce, but Arteta has shown already that that isn’t something he is afraid to encourage.
Inter Milan would be reluctant to part with Barella, though. The 26-year-old is a star for them, and was in fine form once again last season, as he featured 52 times in all competitions, and chipped in with 9 goals.
The 45-cap Italy international would be a sensational signing for Arsenal, even if they have to sacrifice Tomiyasu to get a deal done.