Ben White admitted he is flattered to be linked with a club like Arsenal amid speculation the Gunners are closing in on the defender.
The centre-back’s stock has rocketed in the past 12 months and White’s performances for Brighton in the Premier League was rewarded with a maiden spot in England’s Euro 2020 squad.
Gareth Southgate picked White ahead of other options to replace the injured Trent Alexander-Arnold, although he is yet to make an appearance at Euro 2020.
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Arsenal have reportedly lodged
an offer worth up to £50 million
for White and
quizzed the 23-year-old about his reaction to the transfer links.
He replied: “It’s nice, it’s happened quite a lot over the last two years, there’s been a lot of noise.”
Bukayo Saka is the only Gunner in the England squad, although Arsenal fans will be hoping the forward will be working on convincing White to join the London club.
White was asked if he spoke to his England team-mates about making a big move, but he was tight lipped about any conversations.
“Not really,” he replied. “You don’t know what’s true and what’s not. So there’s no real point talking about it.”
White is one of Arteta’s priorities this summer and is seen as the perfect right-sided defender to slot into the Arsenal manager’s preferred formation.
Arsenal’s offer is reportedly £45 million upfront with £5 million in add-ons also on the table.
Brighton will disappointed to lose White, but a move to Arsenal will cap off a rapid rise to prominence for the Englishman.
White was released by Southampton when he was 16 years old and had to fight his way back to the top.
“When I was at Southampton I didn’t have any confidence,” White said.
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“The way I play now is with a lot of confidence. It’s the complete opposite of what I used to be.
“I think coming through Brighton the coaches and the people really believed in me.
“I think you get that with playing and at Southampton I was on the sidelines a lot. But I went Brighton and went straight into the team and played.
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“It’s tough when you get released and you’re not wanted. Especially when you’re young, it’s hard to deal with.
“You either sink or swim, but for me I obviously wanted it a lot and it was the only thing I wanted at the time so I went for it.”
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