William Saliba is now joining Arsenal
According to Ligue 1 side St Etienne, 19-year-old defender William Saliba is now on his way to Arsenal.
Arsenal signed Saliba last summer, however the Gunners agreed to allow the defender to remain with Les Verts for the 2019-20 season.
While the French league season was ended several weeks ago, the French Cup final is still poised to go ahead.
St Etienne are due to take on PSG in the Coupe De France showpiece on July 24.
However, St Etienne will have to go into that game without Saliba.
St Etienne slam Arsenal after ‘unacceptable sports & financial conditions’
On Tuesday, in his press conference before the Norwich game, Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta was aksed about Saliba’s situation.
At the time of the question, Saliba was still a St Etienne player, as his loan agreement only expired at midnight on June 30.
Arteta indicated that he was happy for the teenager to remain in France to play in the final. Arteta said:
He has earned his right to play that final if their manager wants to do that.
I think we have to give him the opportunity to do that, to enjoy that, and we can have him after that.
Hours later, however, St Etienne posted an article on their website confirming that they failed to agree a contract extension with Arsenal.
St Etienne’s message read:
AS Saint-Etienne was pleased to learn yesterday Tuesday that Mikel Arteta, Arsenal coach, was ready to leave William Saliba at the disposal of the club until the final of the Coupe de France, July 24 next.
William Saliba had been training for several days with Claude Puel’s group and was obviously very enthusiastic about the idea of finishing his time in Green with such a match.
Sadly, ASSE, who simply wanted the extension of the initial loan until July 24, could not find an agreement this evening with Arsenal to allow the defender to properly prepare and play this match, the English club imposing absolutely unacceptable sports and financial conditions.
🔴 L’#ASSE n’a pu trouver d’accord avec Arsenal pour permettre à William #Saliba de bien préparer et jouer la finale de la @coupedefrance, le club anglais imposant des conditions sportives et financières absolument inacceptables !
📄 Lire le communiqué complet 👇
— AS Saint-Étienne (@ASSEofficiel) June 30, 2020
What do we know about Arsenal’s demands?
William Saliba played 12 times for St Etienne in Ligue 1 this season, and 16 games in all competitions.
According to the Mirror, if Saliba played one more match, another payment would have been triggered:
The two sides have failed to come to an agreement over a clause which could have seen Arsenal pay £2m if he started on July 24.
Saliba has made 16 appearances this term – a 17th would have forced the payment.
Saint-Etienne wanted an extension of terms, but Arsenal chiefs decided they would not accept if the ‘starts’ clause, leaving them liable to pay out, remained.
— Mirror Football (@MirrorFootball) July 1, 2020
What’s next for William Saliba?
With his loan at St Etienne now over, William Saliba is expected to move to London to begin his life with Arsenal.
William Saliba will be unable to feature for the Gunners until the start of the 2020-21 season.
However, the French centre-half could begin training at London Colney soon.
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|15||Brighton & Hove Albion||31||-7||33|
|17||West Ham United||31||-19||27|
|Vardy, Jamie||Leicester City||19|
|Ings, Danny||Southampton FC||18|
|Salah, Mohamed||Liverpool FC||17|
|Aubameyang, Pierre-Emerick||Arsenal FC||17|
|Aguero, Sergio||Manchester City||16|
|Mane, Sadio||Liverpool FC||15|
|Jimenez, Raul||Wolverhampton Wanderers||15|
|Rashford, Marcus||Manchester United||14|
|Martial, Anthony||Manchester United||14|
|Abraham, Tammy||Chelsea FC||13|
|Calvert-Lewin, Dominic||Everton FC||13|
|Kane, Harry||Tottenham Hotspur||12|
|Sterling, Raheem||Manchester City||12|
|Pukki, Teemu||Norwich City||11|
|Wood, Chris||Burnley FC||11|
|De Bruyne, Kevin||Manchester City||10|
|Jesus, Gabriel||Manchester City||10|
|Son, Heung Min||Tottenham Hotspur||9|
|Mahrez, Riyad||Manchester City||9|
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|Wilson, Callum||AFC Bournemouth||0||10|
|Saiss, Romain||Wolverhampton Wanderers||0||9|
|Lerma, Jefferson||AFC Bournemouth||0||9|
|Westwood, Ashley||Burnley FC||0||9|
|Dunk, Lewis||Brighton & Hove Albion||0||9|
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|Neves, Ruben||Wolverhampton Wanderers||0||9|
|Tarkowski, James||Burnley FC||0||9|
|Grealish, Jack||Aston Villa||0||8|
|Hendrick, Jeff||Burnley FC||0||8|
|Diop, Issa||West Ham United||0||8|
|Winks, Harry||Tottenham Hotspur||0||8|
|Calvert-Lewin, Dominic||Everton FC||0||7|
|Moutinho, Joao||Wolverhampton Wanderers||0||7|
|Ward-Prowse, James||Southampton FC||0||7|
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|Alexander-Arnold, Trent||Liverpool FC||12|
|Traore, Adama||Wolverhampton Wanderers||9|
|Son, Heung Min||Tottenham Hotspur||8|
|Mahrez, Riyad||Manchester City||8|
|Silva, David||Manchester City||8|
|Robertson, Andrew||Liverpool FC||8|
|Salah, Mohamed||Liverpool FC||7|
|Mane, Sadio||Liverpool FC||7|
|Firmino, Roberto||Liverpool FC||7|
|Silva, Bernardo||Manchester City||7|
|Moutinho, Joao||Wolverhampton Wanderers||7|
|Jimenez, Raul||Wolverhampton Wanderers||6|
|Rashford, Marcus||Manchester United||6|
|Grealish, Jack||Aston Villa||6|
|Barnes, Harvey||Leicester City||6|
|James, Daniel||Manchester United||6|
|Westwood, Ashley||Burnley FC||6|
|Digne, Lucas||Everton FC||6|
|Buendia, Emiliano||Norwich City||6|