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Transfer Rumor: Arsenal restart Buendia pursuit

The Gunners once again have their sights set on the talented Norwich midfielder

Barnsley v Norwich City - Sky Bet Championship Photo by James Williamson - AMA/Getty Images

The 20-21 Premier League season is firmly behind us, which means it is full steam ahead into Transfer Rumor Season. With assertions from the Kroenkes that they will be backing Mikel Arteta during the summer, the list of names linked to the Gunners is expected to grow as Arsenal look to makeover a side that struggled for large swaths of last season.

The winter transfer window saw Arsenal linked with Norwich midfielder Emiliano Buendia, but the Canaries seemed intent on keeping their dynamic playmaker as they were in the hunt for promotion back to the Premier League after being relegated last season, and Arsenal instead opted for the loan of Martin Odegaard.

Now that the season is over, Arsenal have reignited their interest in Buendia, and if the reports from transfer news guru Fabrizio Ramano are to be believed (which they usually should be), the interest is mutual.

Arsenal’s midfield has been mired in mediocrity for several years and has been in desperate need of retooling, but Arsenal have seemed content with patching it the past two seasons with the loans of Dani Ceballos and Odegaard instead of permanent transfers. While reports say that Arsenal are working to acquire Odegaard permanently after his successful spell in North London, there has been no appreciable negotiation as of yet, which makes the acquisition of Buendia that much more important.

Buendia is creative midfielder whose style of play is most reminiscent of Santi Cazorla. The 24 year old Argentinian is deft on the dribble, capable of pinging passes around the pitch with precision, and is comfortable with both feet. He is also a threat to shoot, having netted 24 goals in 113 appearances for Norwich since joining the club in 2018. This past season was his most successful yet, as he scored 15 goals and provided 16 assists en route to helping Norwich finish atop the Championship. For his stellar season, he was awarded the EFL Championship Player of the Season while also winning Norwich’s Player of the Season.

Arsenal cannot afford to drag their feet with this transfer. Aston Villa has also shown interest, and while Villa might not have the same pedigree as Arsenal, the Gunners’ recent downturn in form and lack of European competition is going to be a more difficult sell to players of Buendia’s caliber. He is in the prime of his career, ticks every box, and seems eager to join the club. Arsenal have no reason to delay, and his transfer will be a tremendous first step toward rebuilding the team in the wake of its worst season in Premier League history.