Transfer Rumor Roundup: Arsenal target Torreira; Evans signs for Leicester, and more

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Ahead of the World Cup, Arsenal is getting in touch with a potential breakout star.

According to multiple reports in Italy, Arsenal has begun negotiations to sign Sampdoria’s Uruguayan holding midfielder Lucas Torreira. The 22-year-old started all but two Serie A games for Sampdoria last season, his second season at the club, and it was also his breakthrough into the Uruguayan National Team, where his performances earned him a place in the World Cup squad.

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The reports state that Torreira comes with a nearly $30 million release clause and that Napoli are in the driver’s seat to sign him, but it all depends on Manchester City’s protracted negotiations for Napoli midfielder Jorginho. Arsenal coach Unai Emery has been reportedly looking at a number of new signings across Europe, especially at defensive midfield, which is where Torreira would slot in.

Here are some more transfer news and notes from across the Premier League and Europe:

Veteran defender comes to Leicester

With Robert Huth being released, Leicester City was in the market for another Premier League-level defender, and ahead of the transfer window opening, Leicester has found a replacement.

The club announced early Friday that it had signed former West Bromwich defender Johnny Evans for a reported $4.7 million, just months after Chelsea were rumored to be spending more than twice or three times that number for centerback depth.

Evans suffered a miserable season both on and off the field for West Bromwich, but perhaps a change of scenery can help the 30-year-old, who should still have some gas left in the tank.

Tottenham chase Grealish of Aston Villa

Playing his first season in the Championship, Jack Grealish looked every bit the part of a player who could play well in the Premier League.

According to The Telegraph, Tottenham are looking to bring Grealish in to bolster squad depth, but Aston Villa want a pretty penny for Grealish’s rights. The report states that Aston Villa have valued Grealish at nearly $64 million, meaning it will take a huge bid to sign a player who is ultimately coming from the second division in English soccer.

Tottenham’s Daniel Levy is reportedly convinced he can sign Grealish for just $20 million. Manager Mauricio Pochettino has reportedly identified Grealish as one of his main summer targets.