Aston Villa set to return with second bid for Arsenal star

Arsenal playmaker Emile Smith Rowe could soon be the subject of a second bid from Aston Villa, according to reports.

The Villans saw their initial £25million offer flatly rejected by Arsenal earlier in June.

Gunners chiefs were apparently surprised by the offer and are not willing to consider a sale under any circumstances.

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According to the Express and Star, Aston Villa remain undeterred and will soon come back with an improved bid.

They’re keen to bolster their attacking options and view Smith Rowe as a future star.

He enjoyed an impressive campaign under Mikel Arteta during 2020/21, picking up four goals and seven assists in all competitions.

Alongside Bukayo Saka he was one of the club’s shining lights in a disappointing season.

As such, Arsenal are keen to tie him down to fresh terms. They’re planning to offer the 20-year-old a new five-year deal to ward off interest from Premier League rivals.

But Villa have not been put off by that prospect.

Jack Grealish is nearing a £100million move to Manchester City, which could force Villa into the transfer market.

They’ve already brought in Emi Buendia from Norwich City for a club-record fee. That signing was expected to compliment Grealish rather than replace him, however.

Former City player Trevor Sinclair has backed Smith Rowe to leave the Emirates.

The pundit said: “The biggest thing out of all that is, why are they [Villa] looking to buy him?

“I think that points me towards the direction that Jack Grealish could potentially be moving away from Aston Villa.

“I have said it before about Smith Rowe. He reminds me of Paul Merson. Before the ball is coming into him, he’s looking to play it around the corner, first time, then get after it and join in.

“I feel he could be a player that could go in, if Grealish did go, and develop his game. Start playing Premier League football and do himself a whole heap of good.”

Smith Rowe came through the Gunners’ academy before making his first team debut in September 2018.

Loan spells at RB Leipzig and Huddersfield Town followed, with Arteta thrusting him into the Arsenal team during the season just finished.

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