Atletico Madrid midfielder Thomas Partey has decided he wants to join Arsenal at the end of the protracted season, according to The Telegraph.
The Ghana international produced a fine performance against Liverpool before sport was halted by the coronavirus pandemic, and he wants to move to England when the transfer window does eventually open.
Mikel Arteta had identified Partey as a transfer target earlier in the season, with the Gunners boss hoping to convince the board to strike a deal for the 26-year-old when football returns to normality.
The report claims Arsenal could consider a swap deal, offering coveted striker Alexandre Lacazette to Atletico with Partey arriving at the Emirates Stadium.
In the current market Arsenal are unlikely to trigger Partey’s £45million release clause, but the player’s desire to join the club could accelerate negotiations.
Last month Partey’s father, Jacob, said the Atletico star had entered talks to sign for the Gunners, but the player’s agent dismissed these claims as ‘totally untrue.’
However, Arteta has made it a priority to strengthen Arsenal’s defensive midfield options, with Partey coming in to challenge Lucas Torreira and Granit Xhaka.
Partey has been an important member of Diego Simeone’s team in LaLiga this season, starting 21 matches and scoring twice, but the Wanda Metropolitano club are prepared to listen to offers this season.