January 22, 2021

‘At this age I need to play’ – Arsenal midfielder Torreira admits he may have to leave Gunners

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The Uruguayan failed to lock down a regular spot during his second season in north London

Arsenal midfielder Lucas Torreira has admitted he may have to leave the club to find more playing time after a season in which he struggled to secure regular minutes.

The Uruguayan made a major impact at the Emirates in his first season with the club after joining from Sampdoria in the summer of 2018, making 50 total appearances in 2018-19.

But that number decreased to 39 in the 2019-20 campaign, as the 24-year-old also saw his Premier League starts drop from 24 to 17.

That has led Torreira to ponder his future, as he was unable to sufficiently impress new manager Mikel Arteta after the Spaniard took over in December.

The midfielder has been linked with a return to Italy, with AC Milan and Torino mooted as potential destinations. In May, Torreira’s agent lent credence to that talk by saying his client “would love to return to Italy.”

Speaking to radio station Sport 890 in his native Uruguay, Torreira has confessed that he was unhappy with his playing time in 2019-20 and may be forced to leave the Gunners.

“I have to think thoroughly about my future. I have a contract with Arsenal and I have to respect it,” the midfielder said. “Obviously, if I were to leave, I would do it for the best possible destination. We have to be calm and wait.”

“Last season I played continuously, this one less so,” he continued.

“This year has been more complicated: I have lost continuity and confidence. I do not like this. At this age I need to play to be called up for the national team.

“Transfer rumours? I don’t know anything right now. I need to rest because it was a very long season, I got injured, then there was the coronavirus. 

“I have a contract with Arsenal, but if I have to change in the future it will be a decision I make for my own good.

“Every player looks for a team where he feels important. We will see what happens in the future.”

Torreira did not get off the bench on Saturday as Arsenal defeated Chelsea 2-1 at Wembley Stadium to win the FA Cup.