Gooner Of Steel brings you the latest Arsenal news, match analysis, transfer news, injury news, team news and rumours from trusted media outlets around the World.
Carlo Ancelotti made a desperate last minute plea to Lucas Torreira’s agent to try and convince his client to snub a move to Arsenal.
The 23-year-old, the most expensive of Unai Emery’s five headline summer recruits at £26million from Sampdoria, has enjoyed an exceptional first season in the Premier League.
After starring at the World Cup for Uruguay on their run to the quarter finals, Arsenal moved quickly to confirm Torreira’s signing and he has slotted in seamlessly at the base of their midfield.
It could have been a different story, however, had former Chelsea manager Carolo Ancelotti got his way upon succeeding Maurizio Sarri.
‘Ancelotti wanted me to bring him to Napoli up until the last minute, but we already had a verbal agreement with Arsenal,’ Torreira’s representative Pablo Bentancur told Radio Kiss Kiss Napoli.
‘He rang me personally to try and convince me, but I’m sorry I just couldn’t bring him to Napoli.’
The tenacious midfielder played a key role in last Thursday’s 2-0 Europa League quarter final first leg win over Napoli at the Emirates, forcing an own goal from Kalidou Koulibably.
Torreira returned from a three-game domestic suspension following his red card in last month’s north London derby in last night’s 1-0 win over Watford but was brought off at half-time as a consequence of the role he played in the game’s flashpoint involving Troy Deeney.
Explaining the change, Emery said: ‘First I decided to do the change of Lucas Torreira because after the red card, the atmosphere is against him,” said Emery.
‘Also the doctor said to me in the first half that he has a little pain for Thursday and I decided okay, it’s the moment.
‘I think it’s small and he can be ready for Thursday physically.’