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Nuno Tavares Transfer News Update: Bundesliga interest

Arsenal are trimming down their somewhat bloated roster.

RC Lens v Olympique Marseille - Ligue 1 Photo by Jean Catuffe/Getty Images

Arsenal are looking to trim down their squad as the start of the Premier League approaches and the close of the summer transfer window on September 1st draws closer. Nuno Tavares is one of the players most likely to be on the way out. The 23-year old spent last season on loan at Marseille. Reports out of Portugal have both Werder Breman and Wolfsburg interested in acquiring his services. Although Bremen look to be close to signing fullback Joakim Maehle from Atalanta, which might take them out of the running.

The Gunners bought Tavares from Benfica for €7M in the summer of 2021 and are reportedly asking for €15M. Despite a smattering of reports of issues with Marseille manager Igor Tudor in the second half of the season, Tavares had a successful loan spell. He scored six goals, five of which came during a red hot start to the campaign, and made 39 appearances across all competitions.

He’s a talented player but still raw around the edges. I think “chaotic” is the best way to describe him. Sometimes you get good chaos Nuno, who loves to challenge opponents on the dribble and can also blow by them with his explosive first step and electric pace. And sometimes you get bad chaos Nuno, who misplaces simple passes and makes basic errors in defensive positioning and judgment. He’s an excellent ball-striker but equally as likely to blast a shot well into the stands as on frame.

I think the hope when Arsenal bought him two summers ago was that he could smooth out some of the rougher aspects of his game. Unfortunately, that didn’t happen. There have also been reports that he has had trouble settling down in London and might be a bit homesick. And while I don’t want to say he has an attitude problem, it seems as if he’s not a good fit for Mikel Arteta’s rigorously structured, highly demanding program.

Beyond that, Tavares is clearly surplus to requirements in North London. He’s behind Oleksandr Zinchenko, Jurrien Timber, Jakub Kiwior, Kieran Tierney, and Takehiro Tomiyasu in the pecking order at left back.

It’s clear Nuno Tavares doesn’t have a future at Arsenal. He didn’t travel with the team to the United States because of his participation in the U21 European Championships, while Emile Smith Rowe, who won the tournament with England, did join the club on tour. Tavares hasn’t been part of the squad for any of the preseason matches, and like Folarin Balogun, he didn’t participate in media day.

The good news is that Arsenal should be able to sell Tavares for a small profit anyway. That’s what happens when you buy young, talented players on relatively cheap fees. Even if they don’t develop as you hope, you still come out alright.