“Come and Get him, he doesn’t want to be here anymore” – Club begs Arsenal to come Sign star Player after He Hands in Transfer Request
MIKEL ARTETA could still be in the market for a midfielder despite Arsenal’s interest in Youri Tielemans ‘cooling’.
Mikel Arteta has reportedly ‘cooled’ his interest in Youri Tielemans and Cheick Doucoure could represent an ideal cut-price alternative. Arsenal have previously registered an interest in the Mali midfielder who is available for £17.2 million this summer.
The Gunners are said to have reached an agreement with Manchester City over a deal for Gabriel Jesus, with the blockbuster arrival of Erling Haaland pushing the forward towards the exit door. The Brazil international has reportedly agreed a five-year contract at the Emirates Stadium, and an announcement is likely in the coming days.
Jesus will become the fourth summer signing in the red-half of north London, following Marquinhos, Matt Turner and Fabio Vieira through the door. Granit Xhaka has again been tipped with a move away, meaning a central midfielder could also be on Arteta’s shortlist.
Tielemans has long been linked with a summer switch to Arsenal, with the Belgian international set to enter the final year of his contract at Leicester City. However, Sky Sports now claim the 25-year-old could be set to sign a short-term extension despite months of transfer speculation.
With a move for Tielemans currently looking in doubt, Arteta could be forced to look elsewhere should he push for a new midfielder. Fabian Ruiz and Oleksandr Zinchenko have both been named in recent reports as potential alternatives for Arsenal to consider.
However, Doucoure might be viewed as the ideal replacement with the Mirror claiming Gunners’ scouts had been watching the defensive midfielder earlier this season. The 22-year-old has already made 131 appearances for RC Lens, and has two years left on his current contract.
Crystal Palace are currently considered the frontrunners for Doucoure’s signature, with reports suggesting talks between the clubs remain ongoing. French outlet Foot Mercato insist Lens have set a €20m price tag for the midfielder and are reluctant to budge on this valuation.
The Ligue 1 side have already signed Salis Abdul Samed from divisional rivals Clermont, and the report claims the signing has been made in the expectation Doucoure will depart this summer. Gunners legend Vieira has identified the midfielder as a ‘priority’ signing and the Eagles are moving to close the deal ‘quickly’.
Doucoure is not the only promising midfielder to feature on Arsenal’s radar in recent months, with fresh reports claiming Arteta could consider a domestic replacement for Tielemans. Aston Villa starlet Carney Chukwuemeka is set to be come the subject of a transfer battle, with the teenager about to enter the final year of his contract.