Arsenal are reluctant to meet Norwich’s asking price for Emi Buendia.
Depending on where you read, Emi Buendia is either at the top of the Arsenal January wishlist, down near the bottom or somewhere in the middle.
The bottom line is, he’s on some form of list. Whether a long one or a short one, he’s there.
Whatever Arsenal intend to do regarding acquisitions in the window can’t begin without immediate outgoings. Up to eight players have been deemed dispensable – another number that varies depending on your source – and when more are added to a group that already includes Sead Kolasinac and William Saliba, then acquisitions can come into play.
Speaking on The Athletic YouTube channel, David Ornstein weighed in on reported interest in Buendia, insisting that he is a player Arsenal have been tracking for nearly two years.
There have been suggestions that in order to finance any deal for the Argentine Arsenal would be willing to include either Joe Willock or Reiss Nelson as makeweights, another area Ornstein provided an update on.
"“Emi Buendia is a player on Arsenal’s list of target but he is not at the very top,” he said. “He is a player that they’ve scouted for more than 18 months, they’ve liked him in the Premier League & Championship. But they aren’t going to paid the reported £40m fee for him.“Norwich will be desperate to keep hold of him at any cost because he is so important to their promotion bid. I don’t think Arsenal will allow homegrown talents like Reiss Nelson and Joe Willock to move in the opposite direction on a permanent basis, a loan move of some description might be considered.”"
£40m is money Arsenal don’t have. Not now, anyway.
Ornstein’s comments won’t come as a major surprise, but they do provide an insight into what may come of the two academy graduates. While the jury is still out on whether they are at the standard required for regular senior minutes at Arsenal, the unwillingness to sell indicates that the page hasn’t turned on either – not just due to homegrown status.
Convincing Norwich to reduce their asking price for one of them on loan for six months would be some ask. The Canaries are financially stable and aiming for promotion, with movement on this due to go down to the wire. As heavily mentioned, outgoings come first.