Arsenal have reportedly been dealt a potential blow to their hopes of signing Al Hilal midfielder Ruben Neves, as he is now expected to stay in Saudi Arabia this January.
Gunners boss Mikel Arteta is a big fan of Neves and Fabrizio Romano has explained how this could mean the Portugal international is seen as an alternative target to Aston Villa’s Douglas Luiz this winter.
However, it’s now being reported by The Athletic that Neves is not going to be leaving his current club in January, so Arsenal may have to go all in on Luiz or look at other options in that midfield department.
The report also mentions Newcastle United as a potential destination for Neves, but it now seems unlikely that we’re going to see him head to the Premier League, regardless of what happens as the English top flight prepare to vote on a motion that would see clubs banned from doing business with clubs under the same ownership.
Neves would surely have been a fine option for Arsenal and a good fit for their style of play, but given that Thomas Partey is having so many injury problems, a more like-for-like replacement might make more sense.
Luiz would probably fit the bill more in that respect, so it will be interesting to see how that develops in the weeks ahead.