Jose Mourinho has suggested he will not stand in Arsenal target Tammy Abraham’s way if he asks to leave Roma and return to the Premier League – but he is confident the striker wants to remain in Italy.
The 24-year-old has excelled in Rome since leaving Chelsea last summer, netting 15 goals in Serie A and helping the side reach the final of the Europa Conference League later this month.
Abraham’s strong form has seen him linked with an immediate return to England, with Arsenal believed to have added him to their shortlist of potential strikers as Mikel Arteta looks to strengthen his forward options this summer.
Roma are reportedly open to selling Abraham for a fee of around £67.5million – a big profit on the £36m they spent last summer.
Mourinho would be loathe to lose his top scorer and does not believe he is itching to leave the Italian capital, though says Abraham only needs to ‘click his fingers’ and he can secure a return to the Premier League.
Asked about the striker’s future, Mourinho told Sky Sports: ‘I don’t think it’s an easy decision for a young, local player to leave his club, to leave his house, his city, his country, to leave the Premier League – which of course is a competition that, when a player is in it, it’s hard to leave.
‘He made that option and I think he made it by trust in me, and I think in this moment, if he wants to go back to England – I don’t think he wants now – but if he wants to go back to England he just needs to click his fingers.’
He continued: ‘I’m so happy for him, back to the national team, loved in Rome. I don’t want to say he’s proven everybody wrong, because I think everyone knows that he’s a good player.
‘And I think also with [Chris] Smalling and [Fikayo] Tomori showing the English boys that there is life outside the Premier League and in Italy there is a life that makes them even better players than they are.’
Addressing the speculation about his future last month, Abraham himself said: ‘I was born and raised in England, so of course there are many rumours here and there that there’s clubs interested.
‘I’m clearly doing something right at Roma if people are interested. I just have to stay focused, keep doing my thing, keep playing my football, focus on this competition [Europa Conference League], where we finish in the league, and we’ll see what happens in the future.’
Abraham is not the only striker on Arsenal’s wish list, with the club also pushing to sign Gabriel Jesus from Manchester City.
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