Arsenal are reportedly willing to sell Emile Smith Rowe in order to increase their chances of signing Aston Villa midfielder Douglas Luiz.
Smile Rowe was rated as one of Mikel Arteta’s most valuable players following the 2021-22 Premier League season, having produced 10 goals and two assists.
However, injuries and a slip down the pecking order have pushed the dynamic playmaker to the sidelines at a time when Arsenal has made significant strides.
Smith Rowe has played just 265 minutes in 16 top-flight appearances since the start of the 2022-23 season, and he is presently out with another injury.
While Arteta has previously emphasized the importance of the England international, there was a sense of irritation in his recent comments on the subject.
As things stand, the 23-year-old is expected to return to the first-team squad as soon as possible to provide cover as the North Londoners aim to make a drive for silverware in three tournaments.
Nonetheless, with Smith Rowe’s contract expiring in 2026 and a renewal unlikely at this point, it appears like a parting of the ways is an option.
Arsenal may include Smith Rowe in any offer for Luiz in January or next summer, according to Fichajes.
Arsenal have a long-standing interest in the Brazil international, who has only grown in stature since opting to stay at Villa Park rather than move to the capital.
Luiz has 18 goals and 16 assists in 170 appearances for the West Midlands club in all competitions, with eight of those coming this season.
Unai Emery is unlikely to cut ways with Luiz at the halfway point of the season, when Villa are vying for Champions League qualifying.
However, Luiz has a contract until 2026, and his latest renewal was more than a year ago, leaving Villa in an uncomfortable position regarding Luiz’s next professional move.
Smith Rowe is familiar with Emery because the Spaniard gave him his first-team debut at Arsenal between May 2018 and November 2019.