6.30pm Arsenal news LIVE: Aubameyang and Guendouzi set to leave, Soler a top target, Partey transfer LATEST – The Sun

ARSENAL players have returned to individual training with the Premier League hoping to restart on June 12.

But Gunners fans may never see Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang represent their club in the flesh again with Luka Jovic being lined up as a potential replacement.

Follow all the latest gossip and transfer news from North London below…


    Arsenal are prepared to let Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and Matteo Guendouzi leave to free up funds for other players, reports the Mirror.

    The story adds that Valencia midfielder Carlos Soler is among Mikel Arteta's top transfer targets.

    Soler signed a new deal with a £140m release clause, but the Gunners have not been deterred in their pursuit of the Spanish youngster and it remains to be seen whether the asking price would end up being anything like that high.


    Manchester United flop Alexis Sanchez shows he’s not letting the doubts about his future get him down with a Rocky Balboa-inspired training session during lockdown.

    The ex-Arsenal man is said to be one of a number of players Ole Gunnar Sokskjaer is trying to offload, filmed himself doing sprints in his spacious back garden to music from the Rocky IV soundtrack.


    ARSENAL have been joined by Newcastle and AC Milan in the race for Real Betis star Nabil Fekir, according to reports.

    But the Premier League duo may have trouble convincing him to make the move to England as he will reportedly only quit for Real Madrid or Barcelona.

    The Frenchman has enjoyed a fine season since leaving Lyon for LaLiga in a £17.7million deal last summer.

    And the 26-year-old is keen to stay where he is despite the interest from overseas, according to Spanish outlet Marca.

    Having scored seven goals in 22 league games this season, the attacking midfielder is said to be a target for the Gunners and now the Toon and AC Milan.

    But he is happy where he is and will only consider a move if Real or Barca come knocking as he likes the style of football played in LaLiga.


    Arsenal defender Pablo Mari has opened up on his whirlwind transfer to the Emirates as well as the coronavirus lockdown.

    The Spaniatd had featured just once in the Premier League and in the FA Cup before coronavirus KO'd English football indefinitely. 

    Mari told the Gunners' website: “At first, part of you thinks, ‘Jeez,’ I finally got here, then had to leave again after two days to finish negotiating the contract, came back, it was hard to get going,

    “I hadn’t done pre-season while everyone had been competing seven months. Bit by bit you get through the days, the weeks, and the moment you say ‘I’m ready, I can compete’, this happens.

    “The first thought was, ‘Damn, I wanted to keep playing.’ But this is no small thing, it’s not a cold or flu.

    “When you see its magnitude, professional questions are secondary. What matters is everyone’s health.”


    Prem games will be staged behind closed doors at neutral stadiums across the country if the Government gives football the green light to return.

    The latest video conference meeting of the 20 “shareholder” clubs lasted some three and a half hours as they debated a range of issues.

    Clubs remain determined to finish the season is possible – as long as there is government approval.

    Prime Minister Boris Johnson has signalled the national lockdown will only be eased in stages and not before next Thursday.

    Clubs are hoping to begin some form of formal training from May 18, with a target for the return of games to resume the season on June 12.

    The clubs have agreed with police advice that the chosen venues should, if possible, be away from congested urban areas.

    West Ham’s London Stadium, Arsenal’s Emirates and the Etihad home of Manchester City look certain to be among the final venues chosen.

    But no club will be allowed to play in their own own home ground in a bid to equalise the unprecedented scenario.


    All 20 teams in Italy's Serie A have voted to finish the 2019/20 season in full.

    An emergency meeting was held today amid reports that Torino and Brescia wanted the campaign to be axed due to the coronavirus pandemic.

    But it has now been revealed that every team in the league shares the belief that the season should be completed.

    The top flight has been suspended since March, but players are preparing to return to training on May 18.

    Italian sports minister Vincenzo Spadafora has warned this does not necessarily mean the season will resume.

    He has also confirmed the league could axed unless an agreement is reached over the medical protocols that will be in place.


    Barcelona may be left with no choice but to play Philippe Coutinho next season – potentially bagging Liverpool £17million.

    When the LaLiga giants paid £105m for the Brazilian in 2017, they agreed to £35m worth of add-on-clauses – most of which are yet to be met.

    By far and away the biggest add-on remaining, according to Marca, is the £17m Barcelona will have to hand over when Coutinho reaches 100 games for the club.

    Currently, he stands at 76 appearances from his 18 months at the Camp Nou.

    But Barcelona were left underwhelmed by Coutinho, 27, and sent him on loan to Bayern Munich for the 2019/20 campaign.

    Reports suggest Barcelona's preferred route is selling Coutinho with Chelsea, Arsenal and Tottenham rumoured to be tracking the situation amid a potential longshot bid from Newcastle.


    Gary Neville has suggested finishing the Premier League season abroad in a coronavirus-free country.

    The English top-flight faces an entire season being played behind closed doors unless a vaccine is created.

    Speaking on The Football Show, he said: “If the Premier League are really serious about delivering the matches that remain in a safe environment they would move it to two or three spots that are within three or four hours of this country that are coronavirus free.

    “They would take the Premier League players, broadcasters and media over, quarantine for a week or two and then deliver it in an environment that has proven it can handle this virus.

    “There are a couple of hotspots in Europe that haven't got coronavirus which could handle the Premier League finishing.

    “If they were serious about it and wanted to deliver it with a safe outcome, they could do that.

    “In this country I'm not sure they can deliver it with the amount of coronavirus which is around, especially with the amount of movement of it out there and the logistic issues.

    “I'm not sure they can deliver what they want to do.”


    Just two days after Watford announced the signing of Pape Gueye, the player's agent has made the extraordinary claim that “nothing is fixed” and that his client could still join another club.

    The Hornets believe that they are signing the French youth international on a five-year contract upon the expiry of his contract at Le Havre on June 30.

    Nigel Pearson's side agreed a pre-contract arrangement with the 21-year-old in January, as you are allowed to when a player in France reaches the final six months of their contract.

    But the player's agent Pierre-Henri Bovis has told The Athletic: “Nothing is fixed.

    “We have a ‘so-called’ contract from January. Now we are trying to resolve possible issues. The circumstances are very strange.

    “The communication of Watford doesn’t change anything for us.”


    Thomas Partey's representatives have had to apologise after a bizarre Instagram post appeared to ask fans to select the Ghanaian's next club.

    JJ Sports Management, who represent the Atletico Madrid midfielder, posted a picture of him above the line: “Pick his club”.

    Beneath, five badges were featured – including Arsenal's, Man Utd's, as well Bayern Munich's, Paris Saint-Germain's and Juventus'.

    Having swiftly deleted the post, the agency were forced to offer a grovelling apology.

    Their statement read: “In view of the publication that was made today Wednesday 29 April 2020 on our Instagram account, regarding the future of our player Thomas Partey, from JJ Sport Managers we want to convey that this publication was not approved by the company management.

    “An internal investigation has been opened to find out what exactly happened, we are sure that this has not been intentional on the part of any of our workers and it is probably an unfortunate mistake.

    “The publication has been deleted as soon as we have become aware of its existence.

    “In addition, the keys of all our social profiles have been modified to restrict access only to essential personnel.”


    What a performance this was from Alexis Sanchez against West Ham.


    Premier League clubs are scrambling to buy face masks as stars return to training ahead of the proposed June 8 season-restart.

    Top-flight stars have been ordered to cover their faces when they get back to work, with Arsenal and Tottenham already in training.

    It is all part of the rules laid out in “Project Restart” with clubs determined to finish the season rather than cancel it, like France, Belgium and Holland.

    And with all clubs keen to get a head-start on the competition, they've raced to purchase face masks for their players and staff.

    Altitude Mask founder – and football agent – Saif Rubie told Sky Sports News: “In the last three days we have been inundated with requests, mainly from the Bundesliga and the Premier League.

    “Our product has been sent out to six or seven Premier League clubs in the last couple of days.”


    An alternative Premier League table has Arsenal finishing TWELFTH while Manchester United miss out on a top-four spot.

    The Mail, working with Opta Sports using a method devised by L’Equipe for Ligue 1, have predicted how the final Premier League table will look if the season does not resume amid the coronavirus crisis.

    Liverpool are clear winners with a record 109 points and a goal difference of 90, that’s a whole 30 points ahead of Man City, who themselves finish just two points above Leicester.

    Chelsea nab the fourth Champions League spot ahead of Man Utd, who finish one point above both Wolves and Sheffield United.

    Spurs take up eighth, with Crystal Palace and Burnley making up the rest of the top ten.

    Surprisingly, Newcastle finish 11th and are two points ABOVE Arsenal, who end levy with Southampton.


    Arsenal have reportedly been joined by rivals Tottenham in the race to snap up Bournemouth winger Ryan Fraser on a free contract.

    It had been believed that the Gunners were in pole position to sign the Scottish international, but Spurs are now in contention.

    According to Football Insider, Fraser has told friends that he would like to play for Jose Mourinho's side.

    They state that he desires to play in the Champions League, with Spurs seen as a more attractive option.


    The Premier League faces an ENTIRE season being played behind closed doors and huge financial losses unless a vaccine for coronavirus is created.

    Sporting authorities are considering playing all football in England's top-four leagues in front of empty stadiums until May 2021.

    Senior officials hope to reopen grounds in December, but everything on depends on Prime Minister Boris Johnson's decision over mass gatherings.

    Should Johnson take a tough approach to events such as football matches, music festivals and concerts, it is unlikely they can go ahead without a vaccine available.

    The secretary general of Fifpro – the international footballers’ union – Jonas Baer-Hoffman, said: “In terms of fans being back inside stadiums that might likely not be possible until people are vaccinated.

    “So it may well be that we play a full season without spectators.”


    The League Cup could be axed to make way for a bumper 44-game 2020-21 Premier League season.

    There is a growing feeling at top-flight clubs that the current campaign will NOT be finished, amid the various complications in getting back underway while the coronavirus pandemic continues to grip the nation.

    According to the Mail, some Premier League chiefs have already held private discussions surrounding the future of the League Cup, deeming it “an unnecessary distraction”.

    With the football calendar already having come under scrutiny for putting too much strain on players, the 60-year-old competition – as well as the FA Cup – could be in the firing line next term.

    But with a permanent scrapping of the latter extremely unlikely, the permanent future of the League Cup could be in serious doubt.


    William Saliba's next game will be in an Arsenal shirt after the French season was called off amid the coronavirus pandemic.

    Football.london reporter James Benge revealed that Saliba is registered with Saint-Etienne until June 30, but then free to return by July 1.

    And with the French season over and the Premier League targeting a return by June or July, Saliba faces a spell watching on TV or from the sidelines.

    Fifa’s legal director Emilio Garcia Silvero has revealed chiefs will simply refuse to ratify any attempts to register with another club until the 2019-20 season has been either completed or officially closed.

    Garcia Silvero said: “Fifa cannot extend the contracts beyond June 30 but the transfer windows will not be the same and the players will not be able to be registered.

    “It means the market will not open on July 1.

    “And if a loan ends on June 30, the player should return to his club but the window would not be open and the return transfer would not be processed.”


    Footballers will be able to refuse to play if the season resumes amid coronavirus fears.

    That’s according to an anonymous Premier League club owner, who claims “no one will be forced to play” as chiefs aim to resume action on June 8.

    A games schedule has been sent to all 20 teams ahead of a crunch meeting on Friday.

    But one Premier League club owner admits players who do not want to feature can’t be forced to lace up their boots.

    They told Sky Sports: “It will ultimately be the player’s decision. If a player doesn’t want to play, it will be their call.”


    Thierry Henry has opened up on his Golden Boot rivalry with Ruud Van Nistelrooy.

    “It became a story between me and him because it was always him or me [to win the Golden Boot] but I don’t know if you remember I used to give penalties away…I used to give penalties away!” Henry said on an Instagram Live with Puma Football.

    “When Edu played his last game for Arsenal and I was battling with Ruud van Nistelrooy for the Golden Boot I gave him the penalty.

    “It’s because you ask me the question don’t get me wrong…but if you look at the number of my assists I gave in the game and sometimes i was in front of the goal and I squared it that would answer that question [whether he was as obsessed].

    “I would not have all those assists if I was only just thinking about the Golden Boot.”


    Pablo Mari has revealed what his whirlwind move to Arsenal was like and his frustration at seeing his opportunities cut short to coronavirus.

    On a Zoom call he told The Guardian:“At first, part of you thinks: ‘Jeez,’ I finally got here, then had to leave again after two days to finish negotiating the contract, came back, it was hard to get going, I hadn’t done pre-season while everyone had been competing seven months.

    “Bit by bit you get through the days, the weeks, and the moment you say ‘I’m ready, I can compete’, this happens …”

    On Arsenal players being quarantined after Mikel Arteta tested positive for Covid-19, he added: “We’ll never know if [Olympiakos and Nottingham Forest owner Evangelos Marinakis] was the reason, if the manager caught it somewhere else, but from that moment we were in quarantine. At first we were very scared: hoping he would be OK, that nothing would happen to him or affect his family.

    “Things calmed: I think none of the team had the virus. We didn’t do tests; we did 15 days at home, and no one had [symptoms].”


    Gunners chief Raul Sanllehi warned signings are 'not a priority' in the summer with Mikel Arteta likely to be lumped with the same flops next season.

    However, Arsenal have still been linked with some names even if they don’t do as much business as might have been planned before the pandemic.

    The North Londoners have been joined by Bayern Munich and PSG in the race for Thomas Partey with the Atletico Madrid star available for £44million.

    Arsenal also received a boost as Le Havre star Pape Gueye’s agent claimed ‘nothing is fixed’ with his Watford deal despite the Hornets confirming the move.

    The North Londoners were also told to fork out at least £25m for Celtic forward Odsonne Edouard if they want him to replace Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang this summer.

  • “Every member of our family was there when the plug was pulled.

    “We all said a prayer and our last words to her.

    “I kissed her. It’s something I’ll never forget.

    “Talking about it now makes me tearful but she went surrounded by love and with the best people around her.”


    Benik Afobe said a prayer and kissed his beloved two-year-old daughter Amora goodbye.

    The ex-Arsenal striker and his wife Lois had just made the most heart-breaking decision any parent could make.

    They had given doctors at the Royal Stoke University Hospital permission to turn off the life support machine that was keeping their precious little girl alive.

    Afobe, 27, said: “It was sickening. It was our baby girl, first child, she hadn’t had the chance to live a life…


    Premier League stars have been told to ‘f***ing play to get paid’ with footballers set to miss out on thousands in contract bonuses.

    The Athletic discovered how footballers feel about returning to work during the crisis, with the season possibly due to be played behind-closed-doors.

    Players who have taken a pay cut are said to be “raring to go” in order for their wages to be restored in full.

    And others depend heavily on bonuses – with an unnamed star seeing their contract fall from £60,000 to £40,000 without being able to play.

    An agent said: “If you want your money, f***ing play.”


    Philippe Senderos told Arsenal's lockdown podcast about the incredible personal impact Arsene Wenger had on him.

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