Transfer expert Fabrizio Romano has confirmed that Arsenal and Chelsea are interested in signing Athletic Bilbao winger Nico Williams.
Williams has been excellent for Athletic Club this season as they continue to compete for the UEFA Champions League spots in La Liga. They are fifth, three points behind Atletico Madrid. The winger has registered three goals and seven assists in 20 league games this campaign.
His performances have seen Williams garner attention from top clubs across Europe, including in the Premier League. Romano reported in his column for Caught Offside:
“Arsenal have sent their scouts to follow Nico Williams of Athletic Bilbao multiple times, and it’s the same for Chelsea. The race is completely open, and nothing is advanced with either club so far.
“He’d be great in the Premier League in my opinion – a physical and technical player; very good one.”
Both London sides’ attackers have failed to impress this season. Arsenal’s primary attacking trio of Bukayo Saka, Gabriel Jesus, and Gabriel Martinelli have combined for just 17 Premier League goals between them this season.
Meanwhile, Chelsea‘s primary trio of Nicolas Jackson, Raheem Sterling, and Mykhaylo Mudryk have contributed 15 league goals between them. Hence, both sides are looking to strengthen their attack in the summer and have added Williams to their transfer shortlist.
The 21-year-old came through Athletic Bilbao’s academy and has registered 17 goals and 17 assists in 109 senior games for them.
Arsenal and Chelsea’s 2023-24 season so far
The two sides have had a completely contrasting 2023-24 campaign so far. While Arsenal have been excellent in the Premier League, Chelsea have shown their brilliance in the cup competitions.
The Gunners are again challenging for the league title, having missed out on it last season by five points to Manchester City. They are third in the table, five points behind leaders Liverpool with a game in hand against West Ham United away on February 11.
Arsenal have also reached the UEFA Champions League Round of 16 where they will face FC Porto over two legs. They were, however, eliminated from the FA Cup and the EFL Cup.
In contrast, Chelsea have reached the EFL Cup final, where they will face Liverpool on February 25. They have also proceeded to the FA Cup fifth round, where they will host Leeds United. In the Premier League, though, the Blues are 11th, 18 points behind the Gunners.