Roma sporting director Tiago Pinto has revealed that Arsenal midfielder Granit Xhaka was interested in moving to the Serie A side this summer.
The Giallorossi failed to agree a fee for the Swiss international before the player opted to sign a contract extension with the Gunners, and Pinto claims he is still frustrated that an agreement couldn’t be reached:
“The market is closed and today I have fun, because we bought so many players but everyone asks me about the midfielder. Everyone knows we were after Xhaka, he wanted to come to Roma, but Arsenal didn’t release him. It’s my regret for this transfer market.”
Roma never managed to meet Arsenal’s asking price for Xhaka so, while some fans would have liked to have seen the 28-year-old leave, there was never any real possibility of it happening.
It was, however, a very strange decision to offer the Swiss midfielder a contract extension, considering the club were prepared to let him go if the right offer came in for him.
After Xhaka’s rash challenge that saw him sent off in the 5-0 defeat to Manchester City last weekend, some supporters will be asking why Arsenal kept him around.