The Evening Standard reported last night that Rafa Benitez made an inquiry into the availability of Lucas Perez last week, but the club has made no formal bid for the 28-year-old Spanish striker so far.
Perez was fed up in London last season because he didn’t get the playing time he expected and even Arsene Wenger has admitted he didn’t give the Spaniard enough playing time,
The result is that Perez wants to leave and initially he wanted to return to Spain where he had been playing for Deportivo before the move last year to Arsenal.
Because of the money situation at Newcastle, the news is that Newcastle would prefer a loan move with an option to buy Perez next summer, but it seems the Gunners would like a permanent move for their player.
There was also an update on the situation yesterday in IBTimes UK who report that the fee Arsenal wants is €15M (£13.4), and that’s €6M less than the €21M (£18.75M) Arsenal paid Deportivo for him last summer.
Surely we can afford £13.4M for a player this season, but Standard Sport is reporting Newcastle are not willing to match that valuation of the player.
Perez was annoyed when his number 9 shirt was given to new arrival of Alexandre Lacazette without Lucas even being told.
The Arsenal manager after the 2-1 defeat to Benfica said Perez was still in his plans for next season, but that’s probably just political at this stage.
Lucas’ agent is Rodrigo Fernandez Lovelle, and he expects Perez to leave the Gunners this season, and he had this to say in the Standard yesterday:
“If he (Wenger) said Lucas was leaving he would have to cut the price for him to exit.”
“It is logical to say he’s staying. He is a good businessman.”
Perez’ number one goal for next season is to get sufficient playing time, so he has a decent chance of making the Spanish World Cup squad for the tournament in Russia next summer, and he would get that at Newcastle.