Roberto De Zerbi has given Arsenal a glimmer of hope on transfer target Moises Caicedo.
Arsenal have had a £60m bid turned down for the Brighton midfielder who has been told to stay away from the club until after the transfer window shuts to remove him from the uncertainty over his future.
De Zerbi admitted he was “surprised” that Caicedo posted on social media that he wants to leave and said that Brighton would be able to move forward without him.
However, Brighton chairman Tony Bloom is adamant that nothing has changed and they will not sell in this window as a point of principle.
Brighton boss De Zerbi said: “It’s already difficult for me to have a coach. To be coach and chairman is very difficult.
“Caicedo is a very, very good guy. I can understand him because when you are 21 and you receive a request of a big big team playing in European competition.
“I would like he can finish the season with us. But we are ready to go without him.”
Can Brighton cope without Moises Caicedo? Have your say in the comments section
“I think we need some players in some positions,” De Zerbi continued. I spoke a lot with Tony. He knows very well my opinion. We are a good team but we can improve in the transfer window.
“We lost Trosaard. If we lose also Caicedo, it will be a problem for us. If we want to fight for Eueroap League or the maximum in the table.
“If you want to stay like this, you can stay But I don’t like.”
Arsenal are desperate for a new midfielder in this window to bolster their title push amid concerns over Thomas Partey’s fitness.