Should Arsenal rekindle their interest in wantaway playmaker?

Donbass Arena Shakhtar

Shakhtar Donetsk midfielder Bernard has revealed he may leave the club this summer - which may be of interest to Arsenal.

The diminutive playmaker, 21, rose to prominence last season with superb displays for Atletico Mineiro, teaming up with Ronaldinho to lead the club to the Copa Libertadores title. His impressive displays unsurprisingly attracted interest from European teams who are always looking to snap up the finest South American talents.

Borussia Dortmund were heavily linked with a move after Mario Gotze's switch to Bayern Munich, but it was Arsenal and Tottenham who were looking to prise the midfielder away from Brazil. They made concerted efforts to sign Bernard, but they were eventually blown out of the water by the financial prowess of Ukrainian side Shakhtar.

Joining up with fellow Brazilians such as Fred, Fernando, Douglas Costa, Alex Teixeira and Luiz Adriano, Bernard was join a club that had earned a reputation over a number of years for signing young Brazilian talent and helping them develop - just as they did with now-Chelsea star Willian.

But Bernard's time at the Donbass Arena hasn't been quite so successful, playing just 17 league games for Mircea Lucescu's side, and despite earning a call-up to Luiz Felipe Scolari's Brazil side for their home World Cup this summer, the playmaker says he may look to leave Shakhtar in search of more regular first team football.

“There is a large turnover of players that pleases no one in the squad,” said Bernard of Shakhtar, “In Brazil I was used to playing on Wednesdays and Sundays and in Shakhtar I have not played more than 25 games so far. Playing very little is hard for me, it’s complicated. I hope this will change. After the World Cup, I leave my future in God’s hands.”

If he's genuinely interested in a move away, then Arsenal should certainly reignite their interest in Bernard. Whilst some may say he is too small for the Premier League, he would offer the Gunners more pace in attack, which they missed desperately after the injury to Theo Walcott.

Manager Arsene Wenger should have a substantial transfer budget this summer and having missed out on Bernard a year ago due to finances, those concerns may not be quite so prevalent the second time around.

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