Former Arsenal star Theo Walcott has urged Bukayo Saka to reject interest from Manchester City this summer and continue his career in north London, despite admitting the Premier League champions are ‘hard to turn down’.
The 20-year-old has two years remaining on his current deal at the Emirates but reports have recently surfaced that Pep Guardiola is lining up a mega swoop for the England international this summer, as he looks to bolster his attacking ranks beyond Erling Haaland.
City have wasted little time in getting business done early this summer, securing Haaland’s services from Borussia Dortmund after triggering his £51.5m release clause, but it is thought that Guardiola is lining up further deals in a bid to secure the Champions League next term.
Saka is one such name that has emerged following another impressive season for the Gunners, in which he top scored for Mikel Arteta’s men, in both the Premier League (11) and across all competitions (12) — form that has certainly caught the attention of several top clubs.
However, ex-Gunner Walcott — who turned out for Arsenal between 2006 and 2018, making 397 appearances — has urged the precocious winger to rebuff interest from the English champions and instead build a legacy at Arsenal, with the current Southampton star believing he will ultimately remain put.
“Obviously, when Manchester City coming knocking on the door, it is such a hard thing for any player really to turn down,” Walcott told talkSPORT.
“He is very young, but I feel that he likes the area of London Arsenal are in, the fans have been fantastic – and at the Emirates, which is one of the best stadiums I have ever played in.
“He has great support, and I will be intrigued. My heart says he will be at Arsenal next season.”