Arsenal to ‘announce long-term deal imminently’ as Gunners make Bayern feelings clear | Football | Sport

Arsenal defender Takehiro Tomiyasu has reportedly agreed a new long-term deal with the club in a clear message to Bayern Munich. The Japanese international was linked with the Bundesliga champions last month, with manager Thomas Tuchel continuing to raid the Premier League for players.

But a move didn’t materialise, and now the North London club have seemingly staved off the threat of a summer departure. According to transfer expert Fabrizio Romano, the 25-year-old has accepted an offer from the Gunners for a new deal.

“Takehiro Tomiyasu’s new deal at Arsenal, agreed and sealed. Japanese defender set to sign new long term contract at the club. Decision wanted by both board and Arteta as there was never any chance for Tomiyasu to leave in January. Announcement to follow soon.”

Tomiyasu has made 73 club appearances sign joining from Bologna for £16million in August 2021. But he has struggled to nail down a regular place this season, with Arteta preferring the central defensive partnership of Gabriel and William Saliba.

But before Christmas, the Spaniard dismissed speculation that the Japanese international was in-line to be sold. “I really want him to stay,” he told reporters. “I value the player a lot, I really like him.

“He’s loved and respected by everybody at the club. He’s getting a lot of minutes now. He’s getting to a level of availability that we need to make an impact on the team. He will continue to be with us.”

Tomiyasu has been unavailable for much of the past month, having been representing his country in the Asian Cup. But he will now return to London after the Samurai Blue were beaten 2-1 in the quarter-finals by Iran on Saturday.

And Arteta will welcome his return. The club catapulted themselves back into the Premier League title race on Sunday with a 3-1 win over Liverpool, but the Spaniard will be all too aware of the need for defensive back-up in the run-in.

Last season, the Gunners arguably saw their title hopes derailed by a back injury to Saliba, with the Frenchman’s 2022/23 season ending in early March. Summer signing Jurrien Timber is already set to miss the season and rupturing his ACL on his Premier League debut in August.

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