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Arsenal have reportedly opened talks with Corinthians about a possible transfer for midfielder Maycon. The 20-year-old is also wanted by Serie A side Napoli.
A report from UOL Esporte (h/t Metro) has said 20-year-old Maycon “sees Arsenal as his ‘priority.'” The player wants to leave Corinthians this summer.
Maycon has become a regular feature in Corinthians’ best XI. He first caught the eye after an impressive loan spell with fellow Campeonato Brasileiro Serie A side Ponte Preta during the 2016/17 campaign.
Arsenal’s interest in Maycon makes sense given manager Arsene Wenger’s history of working with Brazilian midfielders. The 68-year-old helped develop Edu and Gilberto Silva into stars, before attempting to do the same with Denilson.
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Left-backs Sylvinho and Andre Santos also plied their trades on Wenger’s watch.
The Frenchman’s future is in doubt beyond this season, with David Woods of the Daily Star reporting Juventus boss Massimiliano Allegri is being lined up as a replacement.
However, Maycon still fits the mold as an Arsenal target, since the north London club has made a habit of recruiting young players during the past two decades. There is also the not-so-small matter of a potential exodus of talent from the Gunners’ midfield ranks, whether Wenger stays or not.
Specifically, Jack Wilshere’s contract expires this summer. The England international playmaker is drawing interest from Italian trio AC Milan, Juve and Sampdoria, according to Neil Fissler and Mikael McKenzie of the Sunday Express.
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Wilshere isn’t the only midfielder whose future at the Emirates Stadium is far from certain. Aaron Ramsey’s deal runs out in 2019, while Paris Saint-Germain and Real Madrid are watching promising 18-year-old Reiss Nelson, per Spanish source AS (h/t TalkSport).
Arsenal have already offloaded Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain and Francis Coquelin since last summer. This is a squad primed for a refresh in the middle, one a versatile talent such as Maycon could provide.