Deportivo La Coruña have confirmed the sale of striker Lucas Pérez to Arsenal for a fee of €20 million.
The LaLiga side won’t receive all the money, however. €6 million are due to Pérez’s former side PAOK Salonika, who still owned 30% of the player’s rights, while the Spanish tax authorities will take 25% of the remaining €14 million thanks to a debt repayment agreement signed between the club and the taxman in 2014.
Despite missing out on the full sum, Depor will see the transfer as an excellent means of alleviating their debt problems; the club paid just €1.5 million for Pérez one year ago. What isn’t set aside to ease the debt will be used to bring in a replacement striker and to keep centre-back Sidnei, who has attracted interest from Valencia this summer, at the club
The club released a statement thanking Lucas for his hard work and dedication: “His effort has brought much joy to Deportivo supporters, especially young fans. Through his hard work he has really earned their love.”
Pérez scored 17 goals in 37 games for Deportivo last season and did look set for a move to Everton earlier in the summer before Arsenal decided to match his release clause. The uncapped Spanish player has reportedly signed a four-year deal at the club and gives coach Arsene Wenger more options up front.
Speaking to Arsenal.com, Wenger said: “He’s not only a goal scorer, he’s a guy who combines well with partners, who can give a final ball and makes good runs. He’s got a good eye for goal and had an outstanding season last year.”