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Arsenal Warned Off Valencia Star Juan Mata

Emirates club told Mestalla hero is not for sale.

Arsenal have been told Valencia midfielder Juan Mata is not for sale by the Spanish club’s president Manuel Llorente.

The 23-year-old is wanted by Gunners boss Arsene Wenger after once again impressing him at the European U21 Championship.

The Spain international is widely seen as the ideal replacement for Manchester United-target Samir Nasri.

Liverpool and Tottenham have also emerged as contenders to sign Mata, but Llorente insisted his prized asset is going nowhere.

It is believed he has a £15million release clause in his contract, but this only applies if the buying club is Spanish, and cannot be activated by English clubs.

“Juan Mata is not for sale,” Llorente said. “We have not received any offers for the player.

“The news that appears in the media is just rumours. We have a very good squad at Valencia and our priority now is to sign a central defender.”

Llorente’s assertion comes three days after Mata’s father, Juan Senior, claimed Arsenal had made contact with Valencia over a deal for the former Real Madrid winger.

“There have been calls from foreign clubs but now the decision rests with Valencia. [Juan] is on his holidays,” he was quoted as saying by the Mirror last Friday.

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