Arsenal Interested in Athletico Paranaense's Bruno Guimaraes, Says President

Gill Clark@@gillclarkyFeatured Columnist IIJanuary 13, 2020

HIRATSUKA, JAPAN - AUGUST 07: Bruno Guimaraes of Atretico Paranaense in action during the game between Shonan Bellmare and Athletico Paranaense at Shonan BMW Stadium Hiratsuka on August 07, 2019 in Hiratsuka, Kanagawa, Japan. (Photo by Masashi Hara/Getty Images)
Masashi Hara/Getty Images

Arsenal are interested in signing Athletico Paranaense midfielder Bruno Guimaraes and will make an offer near the end of the season, according to the club's president Mario Celso Petraglia. 

The 75-year-old told O Jogo (h/t Lucas Sposito at Sport Witness) that the Brazilian club have already received an offer from Benfica but expect Arsenal to make a move for the defensive midfielder:

"Yes it's true. Yesterday came the official offer from Benfica to sign Bruno Guimaraes. Let's study Benfica's offer. On Monday we will meet the club board to assess this situation. Arsenal are interested, but will only make an offer towards the end of the season."

Benfica have offered €20 million (£17 million) for the 22-year-old defensive midfielder who has a release clause in his contract of €40 million (£34 million), per Sposito.

The 22-year-old has already made a name for himself at Athletico Paranaense and is regarded as one of the best young midfielders in Brazil:

FootballTalentScout - Jacek Kulig @FTalentScout

Bruno Guimarães & Renan Lodi - two amazing youth products of Athletico Paranaense. 🔴⚫️ The future of Brazilian football. 🇧🇷 https://t.co/7EeLjC7H3L

His performances have not gone unnoticed in Europe where he has reportedly attracted the attention of a host of top clubs.

Arsenal, ChelseaAtletico Madrid and Benfica and are all interested in the youngster, according to Globo Esporte (h/t Sposito).

Guimaraes said in December that he would be interested in a move to Atletico Madrid, per Marca (h/t Football Espana):

"Atletico Madrid are my preference for my transfer, but I also have other proposals. I don't know what can happen, but what I can say is that I did my part on the pitch. Now I have to put my future in the hands of those who run the business side."

However, Petragilia has told O Jogo (h/t Sposito) that Diego Simeone's side have "already informed that they are not interested."

Arsenal are expected to do business in the January transfer window and are targeting a box-to-box midfielder and a defender, according to Sam Dean at the Daily Telegraph. However, they are expected to "pursue loan deals" rather than permanent transfers.

The Gunners invested heavily in summer 2019 bringing in players such as Nicolas Pepe, Kieran Tierney, David Luiz and Gabriel Martinelli, and manager Mikel Arteta has said he is not expecting a busy January transfer window:

Sky Sports Premier League @SkySportsPL

"I'm not expecting big things" Mikel Arteta has an update on Arsenal's January transfer plans More: https://t.co/Nz6WixV2OY https://t.co/ES9ZSyILrY

Arteta may have to wait until the summer to make significant changes to his squad but is likely to face plenty of competition if he does want to bring Guimaraes to the Premier League.