Willian agrees to tear up Arsenal contract in order to join Corinthians and will save Gunners £20m

The Brazilian is on the verge of leaving the north London club (Picture: Getty Images)

Willian has offered to tear up his Arsenal contract and walk away from his £240,000-a-week deal in order to sign for Corinthians on a free transfer, according to reports.

The Brazilian only joined the north London club one year ago but has struggled to live up to his massive salary, netting just one goal in the Premier League, and the Gunners have been actively looking to offload him over the summer.

He still has two years left to run on his current deal, which would take him to the age of 35, and is the second highest earner at the club behind Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang.

Willian has struggled at Arsenal since signing on a free transfer (Picture: Getty)

Arsenal feared that they might have to subsidise Willian’s wages in order to find a buyer for the veteran winger, as they did with Mesut Ozil, but he has taken the extraordinary step of offering to walk away for nothing.

According to Sky Sports, the 33-year-old has informed Arsenal that he will tear up his contract with the club and sign for Corinthians in the next 48 hours.

Willian’s decision will save Arsenal around £20million in wages, while he will also take a 70% wage cut in order to return to his former club in Brazil.

Arsenal’s board are said to be stunned and ‘amazed’ by Willian’s gesture and had been fully braced to have to make up part of the difference in salary in order to persuade the attacker to leave.

But Willian is said to want to leave English football ‘with his head held high’ and has no intention of making Arsenal continue to pay part of his salary while he plays for another club, nor does he want to stay at the Emirates if he is not in Mikel Arteta’s plans.

Willian does not want to hold Arsenal to ransom over his exit (Picture: Getty)

Arteta conceded that a move for Willian was in the works last week, saying: ‘We are having some conversations with him and the agent, and we are evaluating the position that we are in at the moment.

‘I don’t know [why it hasn’t worked out for him here]. At the moment, he is an Arsenal player, and we are trying to get the best out of him while he is here. Anything different is just things that can happen.’

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