Alex Baena

Liverpool and Arsenal are reportedly considering making a deal for Alex Baena of Villarreal, who has been spectacular for his Spanish club this season.

The forward has gotten off to a hot start for the Yellow Submarine, scoring six times in 10 games. His performance has caught the eye of several Premier League clubs. Baena showed his worth while playing for Girona in Spain’s second division last season, and he’s continuing to do so this season in LaLiga.

Even though his current contract doesn’t expire until 2025, Villarreal is keen to keep their academy graduate on their books by signing him to a new contract. Baena’s present club wants a raise in the release clause that would make him available for a little over £30 million, as reported by the Spanish publication Sport.

Since City Football Group, the same organization that owns Manchester City, also owns Girona, where Baena excelled last season, they are also interested in acquiring his services. Chelsea’s scouts are keeping an eye on the 21-year-old, as are their counterparts in the blue half of Manchester.

With increased competition for Villarreal’s top players, the club has been able to keep its best players for the past few seasons. After winning the Europa League the season before, the Spanish team made it all the way to the semifinals of the Champions League last season. Their star center-back, Pau Torres, has remained with the team despite summer transfer rumors suggesting otherwise.

Arnaut Danjuma, a winger, is still in Spain despite interest from other teams in Europe. Now, despite Premier League teams’ financial advantages, Villarreal will try to do the same with Baena.

For many of the best teams in England, Baena, a left winger, may be a valuable addition. Both City and Chelsea have enough wingers to choose from, but they are still interested in signing promising youngsters. However, Liverpool may view the Villarreal star as a long-term project despite their depth in the aforementioned positions.

Arsenal has plenty of talent in the wide areas thanks to players like Bukayo Saka, Emile Smith Rowe, and Gabriel Martinelli, but they may also wish to diversify their options by signing Baena. The Spanish market has been a reliable supplier of talent for many years. Baena has played at all levels of the Spanish youth and senior national teams.

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Career

Baena began the 2019-20 season with the club’s reserve squad in Segunda División B, making his debut on 14 September 2019 in a 3-0 victory away at UE Llagostera. In a 1-2 home loss to Real Sociedad on 13 July of the following year, he made his first team and La Liga debut after graduating from the development program alongside fellow teammate Manu Trigueros.

Alex Baena

On November 5, 2020, Baena scored his first professional goal, scoring his team’s third in a 4-0 thumping of Maccabi Tel Aviv FC in the home UEFA Europa League match. He renewed his contract seven days later, this time through 2025.

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Baena joined Girona FC of the Segunda División for a loan period of one year on August 19, 2021. On 13 August 2022, after returning to the Yellow Submarine after starting for the Catalans in their promotion, he scored twice in a 3-0 road win against Real Valladolid.

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