Arsenal outcast Bernd Leno is reportedly ready to reject Newcastle United in favour of a return to Germany in the summer.
According to a report from Daily Star, Newcastle United have been rebuffed by Bernd Leno in their efforts to sign the Arsenal goalkeeper. The German international has no desire to join the newly-minted Premier League outfit and has set his sights on a potential return to the Bundesliga next season.
Arsenal are ready to offload Leno in the summer, with his current contract at the Emirates expiring at the end of the season. The Gunners are likely to sanction a departure if any interested party comes up with an offer in the region of £5-10 million.
After making a total of 125 competitive appearances for Arsenal, Leno is prepared to return to Germany. His former club Bayer Leverkusen have already expressed the desire to sign the goalkeeper, who had made over 300 competitive appearances for Die Werkself before joining the Gunners in the summer of 2018.
Leno is expected to be brought in as a potential replacement for Lukas Hradecky. The Finland international could leave the club, with his current deal expiring at the end of next season. Leverkusen have considered a move for Arminia Bielefeld sensation Stefan Ortega, but in the Arsenal outcast, they could find themselves a prodigal son who could bring a wealth of experience at the highest level of football.
Leno’s rejection of Newcastle United, though, could be a major blow to the club’s quest to find an able competitor for Martin Dubravka next season. The Magpies, though, have no shortage of alternatives. The report from Daily Star states Newcastle United are set to focus on the capture of Chelsea outcast Kepa Arrizabalaga after being snubbed by the Arsenal goalkeeper.
Newcastle have been linked with a move for other goalkeepers as well, including Manchester United star Dean Henderson, who is destined to leave Old Trafford in the summer.
Arsenal, for their part, have already kick-started their search for an ideal replacement for Leno, even though they have already secured the signing of Matt Turner. They are among the clubs in contention to sign Barcelona’s Neto Murara. The Brazilian will be allowed to leave Camp Nou in the summer, although the Gunners are set to face stiff competition from AS Roma.
Another goalkeeper in contention to join the north London outfit is Alban Lafont. The 23-year-old comes with a lot of promise and could be an excellent alternative for Aaron Ramsdale in the Arsenal goal next season.