Dani Ceballos has hinted that his long term future remains at Real Madrid, amid the current uncertainty over his Arsenal prospects.
Ceballos has spent the 2019/20 campaign at the Emirates and, while things initially looked bright for the Spaniard as he provided two assists during a star performance against Burnley in his second appearance for the club, he fell out of favour once compatriot Mikel Arteta took charge.
Ceballos moved to Real Madrid in 2017 for €18m having impressed Los Blancos with two solid seasons in La Liga, but has struggled to nail down a midfield berth since his transfer. He has been linked with a permanent departure this summer, with Real Betis one such mooted destination.
However, Ceballos has now declared his intention to see out his contract in Madrid, which runs until 2023.
Speaking to Deportes Cuatro, he said: “I am happy and I have a contract with Real Madrid, I am 23 years old, I have still got so much to offer. Now I feel much more a player and I am prepared for any challenge that comes my way.”
This may come as a surprise to Arsenal fans, who haven’t seen the sort of form this season which would back up Ceballos’ ambitions. He has made only 14 appearances in the Premier League this term and is yet to score in the competition, with his solitary goal for the Gunners coming in a 4-0 Europa League victory against Standard Liege.
It was recently reported that Arsenal were looking to extend Ceballos’ loan move until the end of the current season, with his initial deal likely to expire before that date due to the suspension of fixtures with the coronavirus pandemic.
He was labelled by some as a potential replacement for the outgoing Aaron Ramsey, who left for Juventus, but hasn’t had the desired impact as of yet.
Ceballos evidently has the ability to succeed, as shown by his nine caps for Spain in a position the country is blessed in, but it seems unlikely he’ll thrive in England. Arsenal have been linked with Nabil Fekir, which would in theory open the door for Ceballos to return to Betis.
If Ceballos is intent on seeing out his contract in the Spanish capital, there is little Los Blancos can do to prevent it – just look at the Gareth Bale saga. With the overall financial impact of the coronavirus yet to be seen, a high earning player on the fringes of the team will be something even Real Madrid will be keen to avoid.