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Arsenal Poised to Secure £47m Transfer of Riccardo Calafiori as Chelsea Miss Out



Arsenal is on the verge of signing Bologna defender Riccardo Calafiori, reportedly beating Chelsea to the highly sought-after 22-year-old. According to sources, Calafiori has “packed his bags” and is set for a move to North London.

Calafiori, a product of the AS Roma youth academy, initially struggled to break into their first team. He moved to Swiss side FC Basel for €2.6 million in August 2022.

After a year in Switzerland, he returned to Italy, joining Bologna for €4 million. His impressive performance last season, where he made 30 Serie A appearances, helped Bologna qualify for the Champions League for the first time.

However, it seems unlikely that Calafiori will play for Bologna in Europe’s premier competition, as several clubs are keen on signing the young defender.

Reports indicate that Calafiori had reached a salary agreement with Juventus, but the transfer fell through, leaving Bologna frustrated with their league rivals after Juventus poached their highly-rated head coach Thiago Motta.

Bologna is reportedly asking for at least €50 million for Calafiori, who impressed at Euro 2024 before Italy’s last-16 elimination against Switzerland.

His performances have caught the attention of multiple clubs, but Arsenal appears to be leading the race to secure his signature.

Arsenal is reportedly ready to pay Bologna €55 million (£46.6 million) for Calafiori, who is expected to join a robust defense under Mikel Arteta. The Gunners have moved swiftly, with Calafiori reportedly giving the “green light” for the transfer.


A naturally left-footed center-back, Calafiori can also play on the left side of a back four, making him a valuable asset for Arteta.

He is likely to compete with Gabriel Magalhaes for a spot next to William Saliba and could also challenge Jurrien Timber, Takehiro Tomiyasu, Jakub Kiwior, and Oleksandr Zinchenko for playing time.

Kiwior, who joined Arsenal last January for £24 million, has shown promise but struggled to secure regular minutes. The Polish international is attracting interest from several Italian clubs, where he previously impressed for Spezia.

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