Brighton & Hove Albion have told midfielder Moises Caicedo not to return to training until after the January window, sources have told ESPN, as the club insist he is unavailable for transfer after a £60 million offer from Arsenal was rejected on Friday.
Caicedo said on Twitter on Friday that he wants to leave Brighton, but sources said the club have told Arsenal they remain firm in their stance that they are unwilling to let the midfielder go.
– Stream on ESPN+: LaLiga, Bundesliga, more (U.S.)
They added Caicedo has been given time off until after the transfer window to focus on the remainder of the season with Brighton, as the club push for their highest-ever Premier League finish.
Sources told ESPN on Friday that Arsenal offered £60m for the acquisition of the midfielder and that they had been keen to sign him even before his move to the Amex in 2021. Sources added that Arsenal would follow up imminently with another offer.
Caicedo joined Brighton from Ecuadorian side Independiente. The 21-year-old has made 31 appearances for the club.
Arsenal have already bolstered their squad in January with the signings of Leandro Trossard and Jakub Kiwior. Their need for midfield reinforcements may intensify depending on the results of an MRI scan that Thomas Partey will undergo following an injury to his ribs which forced the Ghana international to be taken off during Friday’s FA Cup defeat to Man City.
Sources said on Friday the club will still look to sign West Ham United captain Declan Rice in the summer even if their push for Caicedo is successful.
Brighton have seen multiple players leave the club in high-value transfers in recent seasons. Trossard left to join Arsenal last week while Marc Cucurella and Yves Bissouma left the club to join Chelsea and Tottenham respectively in the summer. Ben White also departed for Arsenal in 2021.
Brighton are sixth in the Premier League table and face Liverpool in the FA Cup on Sunday.