Arsenal Mitrovic bid takes a new twist

Serbia Partizan Belgrade Graffiti

Arsenal have been told 'hands off' in their pursuit of Aleksandar Mitrovic.

The news Arsenal were close to signing Aleksandar Mitrovic came like a bolt from the blue earlier in midweek, for he was a player not widely purportd to be on the Gunners radar.

An 18-year-old striker, he has already forced his way into the Partizan Belgrade first team netting 15 goals this season.

In response to the claims, Partizan Belgrade president Dragan Duric said: "There is not a fraction of a per cent chance that we will sell Mitrovic this summer.

"I have heard this and I think it is time to put an end to this story."

He went onto run through the names of potential players who could leave the club this summer, which did not include the Arsenal target.

His comments come fresh in the wake of Mitrovic himself confirming Arsenal's interest.

Speaking to Serbian news outlet Glas-Javnosti, the player said: "I heard that business is already done. I would like to deny this rumours. There is contact between us but nothing else."

Duric's claims could just be bravado, as a big bid will likely turn their head, for they have a reputation for selling off their top young talent as seen with Adem Ljajic in the past and also this summer Lazar Markovic set to leave.

But given Markovic's departure he clearly does not want to incur further wrath of his supporters, and Mitrovic could surely benefit from another season developing in Serbia.

How big a priority he is for Arsenal is uncertain, they have already added one young striker this summer in Yaya Sanogo and are unlikely to break the bank for another.

After being dubbed the 'new Nicklas Bendtner' by a number of news outlets yesterday because of physical similarities to Arsenal's not-so-great Dane, it might just be best for Mitrovic he doesn't sign at Arsenal for that is a tag which would set him on his backfoot from day one.

image: © zongo

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