Arsenal will not be re-signing Carlos Vela this summer after it was revealed that the forward has agreed a new deal with Real Sociedad, signing on for four more years.
The news was announced via La Real's official website, where the club explains that Vela's new deal runs until 2018, a two-year extension on his previous contract.
The Gunners were known to have a buy-back option on their former starlet and talkSPORT discussed the Mexican's potential cut-price return to North London earlier in June.
However, one would presume that no such clause exists in the new contract, with Sociedad hoping to see their attacker enjoy continued good form in La Liga, having scored 47 goals in 126 appearances for the club since completing a 2011 switch.
WhoScored.com depicts how useful the attacker was in Spain's top flight last season as Sociedad ran to a slightly disappointing seventh-place finish:
It had seemed as though the Gunners were set to take Vela back to the Emirates Stadium, able to do so for a fee of just £3.3 million thanks to the stipulation in his deal.
"Arsenal have told us they’re interested in the player, that they want him back to play with Arsenal. We’re lucky because Vela wants to stay with la Real, with us."
ESPN FC's Dermot Corrigan explains that Arsenal will earn in the region of €11 million (£8.8 million) after waiving their right to re-sign Vela, showing just how highly La Real value their forward, per Roberto Ramajo of AS (report in Spanish):
As touched upon in the talkSPORT report, the Gunners may have looked upon Vela's re-signing as little more than a profiteering ploy, bringing the 25-year-old back for a cut-price sum before selling him on once again.
The Telegraph's Jeremy Wilson confirmed the logic:
With Arsenal being the money-conscious club it is, such a move, though uncommon, wouldn't have come as a complete surprise for the North Londoners, although they may have been better off keeping the player within their own ranks anyway.
Last season, Olivier Giroud was too heavily relied upon by Arsene Wenger as Arsenal's attacking options ultimately suffered from a lack of depth.
Vela has developed considerably since moving to La Liga, and for just £3.3 million, it's hard to see where the club might have found such value in this summer's transfer market when searching for capable offensive reinforcement.