Arsenal boss Mikel Arteta is reportedly delaying Lucas Torreira’s exit from the club despite claims there is an agreement in place for the midfielder to leave the Emirates.
Torreira’s agent, Oscar Bentancour, insists the 39-cap Uruguay international is prepared to join Valenica. He previously spent time in Spain having spent the 2020/21 campaign on loan with Atletico Madrid.
While there is an agreement in place with Valencia, Arteta appears ready to hand Torreira a fresh chance during the Gunners' pre-season schedule. This could thwart any summer exit to La Liga and the prospect of linking up with Gennaro Gattuso, who manages Valencia.
Bentancour told Sport 890 as cited by Sports Central: "We have a pre-agreement with Gattuso for Torreira to play in Valencia. "Today, there is an important meeting on this issue. Arsenal coach Arteta wants to have him in the preseason.
Torreia was not part of the Arsenal side that beat Nurnberg 5-3 in a pre-season friendly victory on Friday night but has been named in their squad list that is heading to America for a training camp. This means he could feature in friendlies against Everton - in The Charm City Match in Baltimore - and Orlando City and Chelsea in the FC Series in Orlando.
The 26-year-old has played 150 club games since joining Arsenal from Sampdoria for £26million in 2018. However, 61 of those have been for other clubs out on loan, playing 26 times for Atletico two seasons ago and scoring five goals in 35 games for Italian side Fiorentina last term.
Arsenal are well stocked in midfield following the £29.9m arrival of Fabio Vieira from Porto earlier this summer. Vieira will compete with the likes of Granit Xhaka, Albert Sambi Lokonga, Thomas Partey and Mohamed Elneny for minutes in the centre of the park.
Torreira’s last appearance for Arsenal came in July 2020 in a 3-2 victory over Watford in the Premier League, eight months after Arteta became the Gunners’ manager following his exit from Manchester City.
The midfielder was a regular for Arsenal in each of his first two campaigns with the club. In the 2018/19 season, Torreira made 50 appearances and scored twice in all competitions, helping the Gunners to reach the final of the Europa League, where they lost to London rivals Chelsea..