GARY LINEKER says Leicester star James Maddison would be taking a “backward step” if he moves to Arsenal.
The Gunners are rumoured to be eyeing a move for the England international as a replacement for Martin Odegaard, who has returned to Real Madrid after his loan.
The 24-year-old has been at Leicester for three seasons since a £20million move from Norwich in 2018.
And the Foxes would certainly drive a hard bargain for Maddison, who chipped in with 11 goals and ten assists in 42 games this season.
He is currently tied down at the King Power Stadium until 2024, after signing a new deal worth around £95,000-a-week last year.
And Lineker claimed that a move to Arsenal would be a backwards step for Maddison with Leicester offering European football.
He tweeted: “From my experience, taking a backward step never ends well.”
Lineker’s view comes just days after Arsenal legend Michael Thomas claimed Maddison would be an ideal signing for Mikel Arteta.
Thomas, who won two league titles with Arsenal, told CaughtOffside: “I like Maddison and I am definitely for Arsenal pushing this move through.
“We need to act fast, and also deal with the other issues in the squad at the same time.
“Hopefully we can then get the players in for a full pre-season where possible, ready for the first game.
“Maddison has the quality to play as a 10 or 8, which would be beneficial as I think Arteta’s preferred formation is with two 8’s.
“Injuries have hampered his England career thus far, so hopefully he can have a season injury-free and prove how much quality he’s got.”