Premier League sides Arsenal and Newcastle United have failed with their attempts to land Lazio’s midfield general, Sergej Milinkovic-Savic.

According to a report by Italian outlet Corriere dello Sport, Arsenal and Newcastle United’s hopes of landing Sergej Milinkovic-Savic have been dashed after the 27-year-old Serbian international turned down early approaches from both clubs and made it clear that he will only leave Lazio for a UEFA Champions League level club.

Regarded as one of the most complete central midfielders in Europe, Milinkovic-Savic is coming off what was the best season of his career, with 11 goals and 11 assists in 37 Serie A games this season. The 27-year-old Serbian midfielder was one of the stars of the season for Lazio, being an integral figure in Maurizio Sarri’s side that finished 5th in Serie A last term.

Milinkovic-Savic has been with Lazio since arriving from Genk in 2015 and has been a loyal servant to the club for a number of years now, despite heavy outside interest during that time. To date, the midfielder has made almost 300 appearances for Lazio across all competitions, scoring 58 goals and providing 51 assists along the way.

He was set to be moved on this summer as Lazio looked for funds to reinvest in the squad, with the player himself seeking greener pastures, but the situation appears to have changed now. While there is no shortage of suitors for the Lazio midfielder, no club is willing to match the Serie A club’s hefty asking price.

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PSG and Manchester United have also been intrigued by the prospect of signing Milinkovic-Savic for months, but their interest has cooled down in recent weeks, with no firm proposals arriving on the table. Lazio are said to be demanding a fee in the region of €65 million for the 27-year-old, who is set to enter the final two years of his contract with the Biancocelesti.

Arsenal and Newcastle United are understood to be the clubs seriously interested in the Serbian maestro and could afford his exorbitant price tag. But neither is regarded as appealing destinations and have been turned down by the player, who would only leave Lazio for a prominent European club competing in the UEFA Champions League.

Mohamed Elneny has signed a new deal at the Emirates, but Mikel Arteta is still looking to bolster his midfield unit. Arsenal are scouring the market for at least one central midfielder this summer. Leicester City ace Youri Tielemans is touted to be their top priority, while Brighton & Hove Albion’s Yves Bissouma and Wolverhampton Wanderers’ Ruben Neves have also been mentioned as other potential targets.

Arsenal’s failure to qualify for the Champions League might have damaged their prospects of concluding a deal for Milinkovic-Savic, who was viewed as a potential replacement for Granit Xhaka if he leaves the north London club for AS Roma ahead of the 2021/22 season.

Newcastle are another club said to be interested in the player. Despite their cash-rich status, Newcastle, too, will need to look elsewhere in search of a central midfielder. The Magpies recently had a €60 million transfer bid knocked back for AS Roma captain Lorenzo Pellegrini and have apparently dealt another blow here.

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