AS Roma want Henrikh Mkhitaryan’s loan to be extended for a further season. However, Arsenal are keen to sell the player permanently and gain some much-needed cash, according to reports in Italy.
The Armenia international has been a Gunners player since January 2018, transferring from Manchester United as Alexis Sanchez went in the other direction. This season, however, he was loaned out to Roma, where he has scored six times in 13 Serie A fixtures.
Although Mkhitaryan struggled for consistency in English football, he has been a regular goal-scorer from midfield wherever else he has played, including at Borussia Dortmund and, before that, Shakhtar Donestk.
As the 31-year-old's immediate future remains up in the air, a report from Corriere dello Sport (via Sport Witness) claims that Mkhitaryan finds himself in the middle of some transfer haggling between Arsenal and Roma.
According to the report, Roma are willing to pay £15m (plus £2m in add-ons) for a permanent deal, but Arsenal have set their own valuation at a much more ambitious £24m.
Despite spending significant parts of the season out through injury, Mkhitaryan has produced positive performances in Italy, and Roma are said to be interested in keeping him for longer than the initial loan period of just one season.
A separate report from Gazzetta dello Sport (again, disseminated via Sport Witness) claims that the Italian club are ‘planning their strategy for the future’, and want Mkhitaryan to remain at the club as part of a renewed loan deal.
Mkhitaryan’s agent Mino Raiola said to be working alongside Roma’s sporting director Gianluca Petrachi to push that through.
It is also claimed that Raiola is aiming to get Mkhitaryan’s fulltime employers in Arsenal to renew his current contract (which runs until 2021) at a lower wage-rate before the loan is extended.
Should a loan extension not be possible, Arsenal could well opt to sell the Armenian to raise funds for summer recruits.
Gazzetta dello Sport maintain that in the case that Mkhitaryan is sold permanently, Roma may be priced out of the deal due to Arsenal's high valuation.