Arsenal reportedly made a bid for Barcelona’s La Liga champion Samuel Umtiti on Monday.
Arsenal fans had plenty of reason to tune into Barcelona’s La Liga clash with Villarreal on Tuesday night, with their top defensive target Samuel Umtiti making just his eleventh appearance of an injury-hit season for the La Liga champions.
According to Tuttomercatoweb, Arsenal made a bid to sign the French World Cup winner on loan for the 2019/20 season with a view to signing him on a permanent basis for a fee of £38.5 million.
Goal claimed a few days earlier that Barcelona are willing to cash in with the Blaugrana hoping to finance a deal for Ajax’s Matthijs de Ligt.
Umtiti has established himself as one of Europe’s elite defenders in recent years but last night’s evidence perhaps shows why the former Lyon ace has been made available.
His reputation has taken a real hit in recent months and his nervy, lacklustre performance on the Castellon coach is perhaps a warning to Arsenal.
Umtiti was a shadow of his former self as Villarreal and Barcelona played out a remarkable 4-4 draw, Ernesto Valverde’s side securing an unlikely point thanks to stoppage-time wonder-goals from Lionel Messi and Luis Suarez.
To make matters worse, Umtiti was made to look rather amateur by a man Arsenal fans know well, a 34-year-old Santi Cazorla. The veteran rolled back the years with a masterful display and caught Umtiti out of position with a glorious through ball for Carlos Bacca’s second half strike.
£38.5 for Umtiti? Not on this form.