Arsenal interested in signing Man Utd's Antonio Valencia for free this summer after club do not trigger extension

ARSENAL are interested in signing Manchester United full-back Antonio Valencia this summer, according to the player's father and agent.

Valencia, 33, is out of contract at the end of the season and the Old Trafford club have missed the deadline to trigger a one-year extension.

It means he is now almost certain to leave the club in just three months' time but will be confident of securing a move elsewhere.

Luis Valencia told El Universal: "He definitely will not continue in Manchester.

"He wants a change in the air and the club is not going to renew him either. Like everything in life, everything comes to an end.

"Arsenal, West Ham, Inter Milan and one club from China are options, but in football everything is changing.

"He wants to choose the best option, but above all he wants to sign a contract for two years.

"Not for the money, but for peace and hopefully, he told me, be hired by a team that fights for important things."

Arsenal's first-choice right back Hector Bellerin is currently recovering from surgery on his knee and is expected to be out until the new season.

Despite arriving from Juventus last summer, Stephan Lichtsteiner has endured a torrid season with the Gunners and is expected to leave when his contract runs out this summer.

Ainsley Maitland-Niles has filled in at wing-back in recent weeks but the addition of Valencia would not only provide natural cover at right-back but also some much-needed Premier League experience.

In his ten years at United, after arriving from Wigan in 2009, the Ecuadorian has won two league titles, the FA Cup, two League Cups and the Europa League.

He has also been named Manchester United Players' Player of the Year twice, most recently in 2017.

This season he has played just eight matches, despite being Jose Mourinho's captain, due to a combination of injuries, the continued renaissance of Ashley Young and the signing of long-term successor Diogo Dalot.

Young is one of a number of players to extend their contracts this season.

The winger-turn-full-back added an extra year to his deal, as did David De Gea, while the likes of Luke Shaw, Chris Smalling, Phil Jones and Anthony Martial all committed their long-term futures to United.

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