Why Arsenal failed with Lisandro Martinez bid before £56m Man Utd transfer

Arsenal also made an approach to sign Lisandro Martinez from Ajax before the defender completed a transfer to Manchester United.

But the Gunners missed out on the player as they were not ready to stump up enough cash. Arsenal currently top the Premier League table after a superb start, with Gabriel Magalhaes and William Saliba forming a solid partnership I’m defence.

Mikel Arteta also has players like Ben White, Rob Holding, Kieran Tierney and Tomiyasu as back-up options in central defence, but it seems he was keen to add Martinez to his team, as revealed by Ajax’s chief executive Edwin van der Sar, who sold the 24-year-old to his former club United.

Speaking to The Athletic, Van der Sar said: “Arsenal came earlier for Lisandro, but it was an amount where we said, ‘Thank you very much for the offer, but we’d rather keep the player than start negotiating’.”

Van der Sar then revealed how United’s good relationship with Ajax from previous deals, coupled with the fact Erik ten Hag was now in charge at Old Trafford, helped the Red Devils during the negotiation process.

“With United, it was a little bit different,” he continued. “Over the years we have had a few conversations: Daley Blind, Donny van de Beek. My job is making sure I make the best decisions for Ajax.”

Van der Sar did that, helping Ajax make a near-£51million profit on Martinez, whom they had only signed for £6m three years prior. United were ready to shell out a sum of £56.7m for his signature – the second-highest fee they’d paid for a defender.

Also in the case of Antony, Ajax were reluctant to let the Brazilian leave, particularly so close to the end of the transfer window, but could reject the offer of £85m for the player.

“They’re good players,” Van der Sar said. “Erik knew them, they fit with his playing style. He wanted the players, we didn’t want to lose them so… you put a high price on them. When you want a player, you probably pay a little bit more.”

Antony has blown hot and cold this season – much like United’s form – but has netted three goals already in his 11 appearances.

While Arsenal missed out on signing Martinez, few at the Emirates will be too disappointed with how things have gone so far this campaign. Saliba has been a rock in defence after finally getting his chance in the team, with the Gunners five points clear at the top – and 11 in front of Manchester United.

Source link