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Folarin Balogun AS Monaco sale expected today

The USMNT striker is heading back to Ligue Un.

Arsenal FC v MLS All-Stars - 2023 MLS All-Star Game Photo by Tim Nwachukwu/Getty Images

Arsenal and AS Monaco are expected to announce Folarin Balogun’s sale today, per multiple reports. The USMNT striker reportedly passed his medical on Tuesday and is set to be unveiled by the Ligue Un club on Wednesday (today). There are conflicting reports about the fee — some outlets are reporting just under £35M, others £38M. The move includes a “significant” sell-on clause.

A fee over £35M would make Balogun the largest sale in club history, eclipsing the mark set by Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain to Liverpool in 2017. It’s short of the £50M valuation Arsenal were reportedly seeking, but the sell-on clause could bring the total profit from the move close to that number, meaning that all-told, the move will likely become Arsenal’s record outgoing transfer.

The Gunners had previously rejected a £34M bid from Monaco. Nothing is known about the terms of that bid, but I’d wager that it did not have the significant sell-on clause. With just a small increase in the up front fee, it makes sense that the French club improved other terms of their purchase offer.

Monaco beat out late interest from Chelsea as well as outlasting Inter Milan in the chase. Tottenham, Fulham, and West Ham were all passingly linked with a move for the striker at various points, too.

Arsenal never got the bidding war they were seeking nor did concrete interest from the cash-rich Premier League clubs materialize. It’s an acceptable piece of business from the Gunners, neither great nor terrible. The transfer market for top tier players is weird. There are only a handful of clubs that can scrape together significant fees, and so many of those clubs are Premier League rivals.