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Arsenal transfer news: Aston Villa refusing to give up on Emile Smith Rowe pursuit

Emile Smith Rowe
(Image credit: PA)

Aston Villa are not ready to give up in their pursuit of Emile Smith Rowe, according to reports.

The attacking midfielder burst onto the scene with Arsenal (opens in new tab) last season, scoring two goals and providing four assists in 20 Premier League appearances.

His all-round performances were more impressive than those numbers might suggest, as Smith Rowe filled a creative void in Mikel Arteta's side.

Having joined Arsenal at the age of 10 and come through the club's academy, Smith Rowe might seem destined to have a long career at the Emirates Stadium.

Aston Villa (opens in new tab) see the situation differently. They are on a seemingly unlikely mission to prise the 20-year-old away from north London this summer.

Villa have already had two bids for Smith Rowe turned down, but Football Insider (opens in new tab) reports that the club believes a deal can be done before the start of the season.

Arsenal have rejected offers of £25m and £30m, but speculation over the youngster's future continues.

Villa are said to remain hopeful because they have not been told by Arsenal that Smith Rowe is not for sale.

It's an interesting situation. Villa's persistence suggests they are indeed confident of pulling off the transfer, but it is not clear if their belief is misplaced.

Arsenal will surely not want to lose Smith Rowe after the impact he made last term. Selling him would be a hugely unpopular decision among the supporters, who were pleased to see another academy graduate establish himself in the first team.

Yet Smith Rowe has yet to put pen to paper on a new contract, and that's why Villa's hopes are still alive.

His current deal has another two years left to run, but Arsenal will be nervous unless Smith Rowe agrees an extension before next summer.

Still, Villa might have to look elsewhere as they continue to bolster their squad.

Smith Rowe has perhaps been identified as a potential replacement for Jack Grealish, should the club captain depart.

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