Arsenal transfer bid for Italy Euro 2020 star Manuel Locatelli confirmed by Sassuolo chief

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Arsenal are in the race for Italy star Manuel Locatelli and Sassuolo CEO Giovanni Carnevali has confirmed the Gunners have tabled their first bid for the midfielder. The midfield dynamo caught the eye in the Azzurri’s opening two group games against Turkey and Switzerland, netting a brace against the quarter-finalists in Rome.

However, Roberto Mancini then made the cut-throat decision to drop Locatelli to bring Marco Verratti back into his side.

Yet that hasn’t stopped clubs from circling for the Sassuolo maestro, who looks set to leave the club this summer.

Juventus and Manchester City had been among those keen before the European Championship but the Bianconeri now have extra competition for his services.

Carnevali told Sky Italia: “Arsenal have made an official bid for Locatelli. They’re pushing hard to sign Manuel and it’s an important bid… we will see.

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“Also Juventus want Locatelli and we’ve a special relationship with them. We’ve a new meeting scheduled with Juve.”

Juventus are the favourites for the midfielder, who made his name by scoring a stunner against the Old Lady for AC Milan in 2016.

His stock has significantly risen with his performances at Euro 2020, which is why Sassuolo are keen to entertain offers.

Arsenal have moved quickly to push ahead with their summer transfer business as they look to climb the Premier League table.

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The club are expected to complete the signing of Ben White for close to £50million after the Euros, although they are still yet to agree a fee with Brighton.

Benfica left-back Nuno Tavares is expected to arrive for an initial £6.8million in the coming days.

Anderlecht midfielder Albert Sambi Lokonga is also expected to sign with personal terms already agreed.

The Gunners are looking to strengthen in midfield with Matteo Guendouzi expected to depart for Marseille.

Lucas Torreira is also heading for the exit door having spent last season on loan with La Liga champions Atletico Madrid.

Meanwhile, Locatelli has already made it clear that he will wait until after the Euros to decide his future.

“It is just gossip,” he said, ahead of the tournament.

“There is such an important competition to play and I am focused on that.

“It would be a waste of time to think about that, even though I know that after the Euros will have some decisions to make.”

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