The Sun reported last month that Arsenal were closing in on a £20 million deal to sign Sporting Lisbon’s 18-year-old Portuguese sensation Tiago Tomas.
Although the deal is nowhere near done, the teenage striker is going from strength to strength in the Portuguese top-flight.
Despite only being 18 years old, Tomas has played 30 times in all competitions – 20 of those coming from the start. He has six goals and three assists to his name, which might not sound like a lot, but those figures have made their way into the record books.
Tomas’ goal against Tondela on Saturday made him the youngest Sporting Lisbon player to score six goals in a campaign since 1984.
Sporting’s greatest-ever export Cristiano Ronaldo held the record for almost two decades until last weekend when Tomas surpassed the guy he probably wants to emulate in the coming years.
Can Arsenal sign Tomas?
The report from The Sun claimed that both Edu and Mikel Arteta were hugely impressed by Tomas’ performance against Benfica in February, a few days before we faced Jorge Jesus’ side in the Europa League.
Arsenal technical director Edu instantly rang his counterpart at Sporting – Hugo Viana – to discuss a potential transfer, and the report claims that the Gunners are close to finalising a deal for the teenager.
Tomas has a staggering £52 million release clause in his contract. That’s way too much for an unaccomplished teenager who has scored just six times in his senior career. Thankfully for the interested parties, financially troubled Sporting are prepared to let him go for just £20 million this summer.
Years after missing out on Cristiano Ronaldo, Arsenal will not want to make the same mistake again. However, £20 million might still be a bit too steep for Edu’s liking, especially considering that we might not have a lot of money available this summer.