Lucas Torreira is to leave Sampdoria for a fee of around £26million, the Serie A side’s president Massimo Ferrero has said, as reports continue to link Arsenal with a move for the 22-year-old Uruguayan midfielder.
Torreira joined Sampdoria in 2015 and has made 74 appearances for the Italian club.
‘Torreira’s gone for €30m (£26m),’ Ferrero told Italian television channel Sportitalia.
‘I bought him from Pescara when nobody believed in him. We gambled on him and we won, paying just €3m. The money we’re earning is necessary to increase our club’s capital.
‘If we get a big offer for somebody, I will accept it, but we don’t need to sell our players off at bargain prices.’
Unai Emery has been swift to bolster his squad since being confirmed as Arsene Wenger’s replacement. Bernd Leno has joined from Bayer Leverkusen, while Stephan Lichtsteiner has moved from Juventus on a free transfer.
Torreira, who is currently on international duty at the World Cup with Uruguay, was praised by Cesc Fabregas on BBC ahead of their clash with Saudi Arabia.
Speaking ahead of the 1-0 win, the Chelsea midfielder, talking initially about Juve midfielder Rodrigo Bentancur, said: ‘
He’s a young boy who signed for Juventus. He hasn’t played a lot but you can see that he has a lot of personality, likes to play, he’s not scared.
‘And for a team like Uruguay that doesn’t have a lot of ‘ballers’ or possession – they need a player like him.
‘They also have Torreira on the bench who I really like for Sampdoria and they break lines.’