Real Madrid signing confirmed – Is he Arsenal-linked Illarramendi’s replacement?

Bernabeu Outside

Real Madrid have agreed a deal for defensive midfielder Lucas Silva.

Real Madrid have agreed a deal to sign Brazilian defensive midfielder Lucas Silva, reports from the Spanish paper AS confirm.

The 21-year-old has long been linked with a move with the La Liga giants after gaining recognition in Brazil as one of the country’s most promising defensive midfielders.

Despite alleged interest from Arsenal, as reported by the Daily Mail, Cruzeiro vice president Marcio Rodrigues has conceded that deal to Madrid has been done.

“The deal is done and it will be announced on Thursday,” he was quoted as saying by AS.

With Silva being an exciting prospect and expected to feature in the Madrid first-team squad, questions have been raised over the future of Spanish star Aiser Illarramendi.

The 24-year-old only moved to the Santiago Bernabeu 18 months ago, joining the club from fellow La Liga side Real Sociedad after impressing greatly at the Anoeta stadium.

However, he has struggled to make an impact in the Spanish capital and with just three La Liga starts to his name this season, the Express have linked him with a move to Premier League side Arsenal.

The Gunners are said to be on the lookout for a new defensive midfielder this winter, with the general consensus suggesting that the North Londoners possess a real weakness in this area.

Spanish expert Guillem Balague has posed the question on Twitter, hinting that Illarramendi’s future at the Santiago Bernabeu could lie elsewhere. He wrote: “Lucas Silva comes in. Illarra forced out?”

If Arsene Wenger wishes to acquire him, however, he will need to act quickly as Basque outfit Athletic Bilbao are said to be negotiating a deal to take him on loan with the option of a permanent deal, AS report.

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