MOISES Caicedo has openly pleaded with Brighton to let him leave this January after the club reportedly rejected a £60 million bid from Premier League leaders Arsenal.
Chelsea were also believed to have shown interest in the Ecuador midfielder and reportedly had a £45m offer rejected.
Brighton sold Belgium forward Leandro Trossard to Arsenal this month for £27m and the media in England reported the Seagulls were not interested in letting Caicedo follow him out of the club.
In a social media post late last night, the 21-year-old central midfielder said he was grateful to Brighton for giving him the chance to play in the Premier League but did not want to miss out on a ‘magnificent opportunity’.
“I am the youngest of 10 siblings from a poor upbringing in Santa Domingo in Ecuador. My dream (was) always to be the most decorated player in the history of Ecuador,” Caicedo wrote on Instagram and Twitter.
“I am proud to be able to bring in a record transfer fee for Brighton which would allow them to reinvest it and help the club continue to be successful.
“The fans have taken me into their hearts and they will always be in my heart, so I hope they can understand why I want to take up this magnificent opportunity.”
A £60m would be a record for Brighton, after they sold Marc Cucurella to Chelsea in August for an initial fee of £55m, potentially rising to £62m in add-ons.
Brighton are sixth in the Premier League table halfway through the season and could qualify for European football for the first time in the club’s history.
Earlier yesterday, Brighton manager Roberto de Zerbi had said he hoped to convince Caicedo to stay.
“I spoke with him like a father, not like a coach,” he told reporters ahead of tomorrow’s FA Cup fourth round clash against Liverpool. “I hope he can stay with us until the end of the season… That’s the best solution for him and for us.”
The January transfer window will shut on Tuesday.