Arsenal are pushing hard for a deal to sign Dusan Vlahovic from Fiorentina. The Serbian striker represents an acquisition that could be pivotal in the Gunners’ chances of qualifying for the Champions League this season.
football.london understands that Edu is doing ‘everything possible’ to try and secure a deal for the forward this month. Stealing him away from north London rivals Tottenham who are also interested in the player.
Arsenal would be looking for Vlahovic to become the club’s new main striker, especially considering the futures of the existing crop of forwards is very uncertain with just six months remaining on both Alexandre Lacazette and Eddie Nketiah’s contract.
However, the latter appears closer to leaving the club this winter as things stand.
According to The Times, Crystal Palace have entered talks with Arsenal regarding a possible deal for Nketiah. With both Jordan Ayew and Wilfried Zaha at the African Cup of Nations, Nketiah would provide plenty of goalscoring cover for Patrick Vieira’s side in their absence.
Were Nketiah to leave, this would mean that Lacazette would remain as the only obvious senior option left at the club who Mikel Arteta would likely field.
Folarin Balogun is expected to join Middlesbrough on loan and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang has remained exiled from the squad since the stripping of his captaincy after a number of disciplinary breaches.
Considering this, if Arsenal are willing to sanction the sale of Nketiah in this window, this would be a good indication of the club’s confidence of landing a replacement striker during the January transfer period, at least in theory.
However, Edu and Mikel Arteta did allow Ainsley Maitland-Niles to leave for Roma on loan at his request even in the knowledge that Thomas Partey and Mohamed Elneny had left for the AFCON and Granit Xhaka was positive for Covid-19.
Arsenal’s weak midfield was a huge reason for their defeat and subsequent elimination from the FA Cup at the hands of Nottingham Forest.
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Allowing another depth option to leave the club without being confident of quickly securing another player in the same position would be very risky.
With a chase for the top four very much a reality for the Gunners this season, another misstep in squad management could end Arsenal’s hopes of qualifying for the Champions League.
There remains just under three weeks until the close of the window and plenty of time for transfers both in and out to happen. Arteta and Edu need to ensure the squad remains well stocked and areas of concern are addressed before the end of January.
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