Arsenal were reportedly prepared to make a move for Atletico Madrid star Thomas Partey over the summer but a potential deal didn’t materialise.
According to Spanish newspaper Mundo Deportivo, cited by Sports Witness, Arsenal were interested in moving for the midfielder but decided against firming up their rumoured interest in what was a fairly productive window for manager Unai Emery.
And now, the same report claims that the La Liga heavyweights are desperate to offer the holding midfielder a fresh deal at the Wanda Metropolitano, which would see his £44 million exit clause significantly increase.
Madrid are hoping to agree to new terms with the Ghanian before the end of the year, and if the board do, it would make it extremely difficult for Arsenal to head back in for the 26-year-old star should they wish to do so.
He has been a consistent performer under manager Diego Simeone in recent campaigns, so a £44m move over the summer window could have been a shrewd piece of business.
Emery has placed his trust in club captain, Switzerland international Granit Xhaka along with youngsters Matteo Guendouzi and Joe Willock so far this campaign after failing to add to his defensive midfield options.
Partey would have brought a real physical presence to the Emirates Stadium, and the north Londoners could be made to regret their summer decision, especially if the midfielder pens fresh terms in Spain.