Arsenal are set to complete the signing of David Raya from Brentford, but this will now be a loan move rather than a permanent one.
The goalkeeper is expected to have his medical today ahead of his transfer, which initially looked like a deal totalling £30m, with a five-year contract.
However, Ornstein has now stated that the deal will initially be a loan, with Arsenal paying £3m for Raya this season, with a £27m option to buy available at the end of the campaign.
“The deal is expected to see Raya move across London for an initial £3million loan fee with the option of making the switch permanent for a further £27m next summer,” Ornstein revealed in The Athletic.
“Raya has one year left on his contract with Brentford and will now extend that ahead of the transfer.”
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Edu Gaspar masterclass?
It’s hard to look beyond the structure of this deal as anything but a masterclass in negotiations from Arsenal.
Sporting director Edu Gaspar has received praise for the club’s transfer deals this summer, but this may be his biggest victory yet, given just how well the deal suits Arsenal.
The club have now sold Matt Turner to Nottingham Forest for a fee which could reach £10m, and Raya will replace him in the squad for what will now be a profit in terms of financial fair play for this season.
Raya will battle Aaron Ramsdale for the number one goalkeeping spot, creating increased competition within the squad, but if the deal does not eventually work out, for example, if Raya eventually decides that he wants to be the undisputed first-choice, then Arsenal are under no obligation to activate the buy option.
If Arsenal are impressed and want to keep Raya, they can simply activate the option to buy next season. This essentially makes the deal a risk-free, financially beneficial way of upgrading the goalkeeping roster for at least one season, and the small initial fee means that there may now be more room in the transfer budget for this summer.