AC Milan set to trigger Arsenal transfer target’s €40m release clause



Mikel Arteta pictured watching Arsenal play Manchester City in the 2023 Community Shield
Arsenal look set to miss out on summer target Joshua Zirkzee (Picture: Getty)

AC Milan are reportedly set to trigger Joshua Zirkzee’s €40m release clause as they look to beat Arsenal to the Bologna striker’s signature this summer.

The Gunners are keen to bolster their attacking options ahead of the 2024-25 campaign and Zirkzee is one of their targets for the summer transfer window.

The 23-year-old Dutchman has produced 14 goals and nine assists across 58 games for the Italian club to date and looks set to join one of Europe’s top sides.

AC Milan and Arsenal were not the only clubs keeping tabs on Zirkzee with the player also attracting interest from the likes of Manchester United and Inter Milan.

It appears AC Milan are leading the race, though, amid fresh reports that the Serie A side have informed Bologna that they will now pay his €40m release clause.

AC Milan will not need to negotiate with Bologna once the fee is paid but they are still working towards agreeing personal terms with Zirkzee and his agent.

It is believed that Zirkzee is keen to remain in Italy, giving AC Milan an advantage over Arsenal and United, while the Rossoneri also moved quicker than their city rivals Inter.

Joshua Zirkzee of Bologna pictured in action against Napoli in 2024
Joshua Zirkzee looks like he could be on his way to AC Milan (Picture: Shutterstock)

Despite AC Milan moving ahead in the race, Inter will be hoping that talks break down so they can swoop in and sign Zirkzee from under their rivals’ noses.

‘Zirkzee is a great champion,’ Inter’s vice-president Javier Zanetti recently said.

‘We are talking about a young, talented, intelligent, physically very strong player.

Inter Milan players celebrate a goal against rivals AC Milan in April 2024
Inter Milan are alsokeen to bring in Joshua Zirkzee from Bologna (Picture: Getty)

‘Someone like that would be useful to any great team aiming for important goals.’

Zirkzee was in contention to feature for Netherlands at Euro 2024 this summer but he was not included in Ronald Koeman’s provisional squad.

He joined Bologna for €8.5m from Bayern Munich in August 2022 and despite the German side having a buy-back option, they have given no indication that they are looking to activate it this summer.

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