Over the last week or so transfer speculation linking Bournemouth star Ryan Fraser with Arsenal has intensified and reached such a crescendo that the club has felt it necessary to release a statement clarifying where they stand.
The Chief executive at Bournemouth Neill Blak released an official statement via the club’s official website which read:
“Much has been written and spoken about the future of Ryan Fraser, as his contract with AFC Bournemouth heads into its final 12 months.
“As is the club’s policy, details regarding contract negotiations or transfer activity are kept confidential and do not enter the public domain.
“However, following some recent reports I felt it was imperative to speak publicly and provide balanced clarity on the situation.
“The offer of a new long-term contract has been on the table for Ryan for some time.
“In September 2018, at the request of Ryan’s representative, negotiations were paused to allow the player to focus entirely on his football.
“He went on to have an outstanding season, with seven goals and 13 assists helping the club secure a fifth successive season of Premier League football.
“During that time, I have been – and continue to be – in regular dialogue with Ryan’s representative, and have made it clear to both him and the player that our contract offer remains on the table.
“Quite simply, Ryan is a fantastic player and an integral part of our squad. We look forward to welcoming Ryan back to us next month after a well-earned break, upon which he can focus on having another standout season for AFC Bournemouth.”
I do not see how that will dampen down the feverish transfer talk, in fact, from my reading, it makes it all the more likely that the media, pundits and fans will continue to speculate about the Scottish international’s future.
The statement makes it absolutely clear that they have offered him a new contract but that he has not signed it, the season is well and truly over and there is absolutely no reason why he would not have signed by now unless he was actively looking at alternatives and it is clear that Arsenal is one of those alternatives.
Bournemouth can look forward to Fraser playing for them next season all they want but unless he puts pen to paper they face the prospect of either losing him for nothing next year or cashing in on him now.
It is understandable why they felt they needed to put this statement out but the truth is that all they have done is confirm that Fraser is very likely to leave the Cherries this summer.
The ball is well and truly in Arsenal’s court now, they can either table a bid or move on because you can be assured that other clubs will have read that statement and most likely drawn the same conclusion I have done and that is that Fraser is available and the right offer will land him.