Mikel Arteta sure Aston Villa target Emile Smith Rowe will remain at Arsenal

Arsenal boss Mikel Arteta has claimed Villa target Emile Smith Rowe will “100 per cent” be staying at the Emirates this summer.

Arsenal's Emile Smith Rowe during the pre-season match at Easter Road, Edinburgh.
Arsenal's Emile Smith Rowe during the pre-season match at Easter Road, Edinburgh.

Smith Rowe has been the subject of two rejected bids from Villa, who identified the 20-year-old as their primary target to fill the No.10 position.

Speaking after Arsenal’s 2-1 friendly defeat at Hibernian on Tuesday night, Arteta insisted the attacking midfielder - who has been in discussions over a new contract - was going nowhere.

“Without a question. Yes. He (Smith Rowe) will stay here. 100 per cent,” said Arteta, before refusing to comment when quizzed on Villa’s offers, the second of which totalled around £30million.

Villa had been weighing up a third bid for Smith Rowe but increasingly it appears will turn their attention elsewhere.

Boss Dean Smith has placed a priority on boosting his attacking resources this summer and the club have already broken their transfer record with the signing of Emi Buendia from Norwich for an initial £33m.

Veteran winger Ashley Young, who has returned to the club a decade after leaving, is Villa’s only other signing of the window so far.

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