Bayer Leverkusen (opens in new tab) have joined Stuttgart and Rennes in the race to sign highly rated Arsenal (opens in new tab) striker Folarin Balogun on a free transfer this summer, according to reports.
The 19-year-old’s contract runs out in June and fresh terms have yet to be agreed, although boss Mikel Arteta remains confident that the striker will stay put.
The Mirror (opens in new tab)reports that Bundesliga giants Leverkusen are interested in the England Under-20 international, adding that only a small fee would be due for training compensation.
Germany has become a popular destination for young English talent in recent years, with the likes of Jadon Sancho, Jude Bellingham, Ryan Sessegnon and Reece Oxford currently plying their trade in the Bundesliga.
Balogun scored two goals in four Europa League games for the Gunners this season and has been tipped for a bright future, and Arteta addressed the speculation in a press conference on Friday.
“I’m still very positive that Flo is going to stay with us and it’s what we’re trying to do as a club, and it’s what I’m trying to do as a manager,” he said.
“As far as I know from last week, the player wants to be here, so I’m positive. I think he’s made some big progress in a few months.”
But the report claims that Balogun is yet to be convinced by the Emirates hierarchy that he will be given regular game time, with Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, Alexandre Lacazette and Eddie Nketiah for competition.
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