Per Carrusel Deportivo (h/t AS), Ceballos has submitted a transfer request to the north London side. Los Blancos have already recalled Jesus Vallejo, Andriy Lunin and Jorge de Frutos, who didn't get the minutes they were likely expecting at their loan clubs during the first half of the season. All three were subsequently sent elsewhere.
Ceballos is a far bigger name, and Spanish football writer Sid Lowe wondered what went wrong at the Emirates Stadium:
According to Marca (h/t Sport Witness), Valencia are already making moves to acquire the midfielder, while AC Milan are also interested.
The 23-year-old last featured in the UEFA Europa League match against Vitoria on November 6 before missing several weeks through injury. Per AS, he's been available for selection since the turn of the year, but new manager Mikel Arteta has decided not to use him so far.
Ceballos flashed his tremendous talent under previous manager Unai Emery, most notably in his first Premier League start against Burnley, when he bagged two assists:
His strong start led to speculation the Gunners could try to make his transfer permanent, and ElDesmarque (h/t Jordan Seward of the MailOnline) reported Real turned down a £25 million offer in October. Just three months later, his Arsenal career could come to a premature end.
Formerly regarded as one of the brightest talents in La Liga, Ceballos is in danger of becoming the latest in a long line of Spanish youngsters to fall short of the expectations at the Estadio Santiago Bernabeu.
Football writer Karl Matchett listed several more:
The attacking midfielder joined from Real Betis in 2017 and made 13 La Liga starts for Los Blancos last season. He's been a full Spain international since 2018 but featured for the under-21 side in last summer's European Championship.
La Roja won the tournament thanks to the incredible trio of Ceballos, Fabian Ruiz and Dani Olmo, but of the three, only Ruiz has since been a regular for the senior team. Competition for a Euro 2020 spot is fierce, with Pablo Fornals, Pablo Sarabia, Santi Cazorla, Luis Alberto and Sergio Canales all also in the running.