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Stuttgart have refuted suggestions they have received an approach for defender Benjamin Pavard amid reported interest from Arsenal. The France international, who is part of Didier Deschamps’ 23-man squad for this summer’s World Cup in Russia, has been subject of speculation regarding his future in recent weeks. Pavard played every minute of Stuttgart’s Bundesliga campaign last term as the club achieved a seventh place finish.
L’Equipe claimed last week that Arsenal had made an enquiry over Pavard’s availability last week. Those reports were followed by suggestions from Bild that Stuttgart will not allow the 22-year-old to depart for anything less than £52.6m. Serie A side Napoli, Europa League runners-up Marseille and German champions Bayern Munich are also understood to be interested in the versatile Pavard. But Stuttgart have dismissed reports of any interest from rival clubs and are confident of keeping their prized asset beyond the end of the summer transfer window. ‘I am very relaxed about that,’ sporting director Michael Reschke told the club’s official website when questioned about Pavard’s future.
‘The statements he made are absolutely fine. That’s the manner in which we have held our talks. ‘He had an exceptional season for VfB and it’s clear that he is in the focus on the international top-clubs. ‘We are in constant exchanges with Benji and his agent and we are well aware of what’s going on. ‘In extending his contract, we naturally spoke about his career planning. ‘We’ve discussed the national team, the Champions League and that it’s our mutual focus to have him play at VfB next season.