Arsenal boss Arteta plots two transfers to save millions and improve key area of squad
Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta is plotting two attacking signings in the summer transfer window who would bolster the front line but also allow him to spend his limited budget elsewhere.
The Gunners’ options in the final third look set for a reshuffle this summer, with Alexandre Lacazette and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang set to leave.
Express Sport understands Arsenal are set to sell both of their two top strikers, with Aubameyang set to enter the final year of his contract and Lacazette going into the last two years of his deal.
And that will leave the north London outfit short on firepower, though they will still have Gabriel Martinelli and Nicolas Pepe as well as Eddie Nketiah, Bukayo Saka, Reiss Nelson and the returning Emile Smith-Rowe as options in the final third.
But with the bulk of those still young, or yet to find their best form at the Emirates, Arteta is keen to add fresh faces up top.
According to Bleacher Report, the Spanish coach is focused on signing bargains once the transfer market reopens.
Bournemouth’s Ryan Fraser is in his sights, with the 26-year-old out of contract with the Cherries at the end of the season.
The diminutive Scottish winger was an Arsenal target last summer and speculation hampered his form at the start of this season.
That has seen Fraser produce only one goal and four assists in 28 Premier League games after managing seven goals and 14 assists in 38 matches last term.
But Arteta still likes the look of wide-man Fraser, who can play on either flank or through the middle as a No 10.
- Arsenal boss Mikel Arteta wants three signings in summer window
The report adds that Real Madrid’s Luka Jovic is also on Arteta’s radar – but as a loan deal.
The Serbian joined Los Blancos from Eintracht Frankfurt for a fee in excess of £50million last summer but the 22-year-old has mustered just two goals in 24 appearances this season.
That was off the back of producing 27 goals in 48 games the season before for Frankfurt, who reached the Europa League semi-finals and finished seventh in the Bundesliga.
Real may then be willing to send Jovic out on loan with Zinedine Zidane having a host of attacking talents reportedly on his radar such as Sadio Mane and Kylian Mbappe.
The La Liga giants may look at the way in which Dani Ceballos has fared well under Arteta and decide a similar switch for Jovic could be beneficial.
Signing Jovic and Fraser would allow Arteta to replace Aubameyang and Lacazette without spending money – which could then be spent on central midfield and central defence.
Gunners hero Kevin Campbell, meanwhile, thinks Real Madrid could look to use Jovic as a pawn in a deal to bring Aubameyang to the Bernabeu.
Campbell said: “One thing I will say about those teams [Real Madrid and Barcelona], they have pieces that could entice Arsenal to do some trade.
“There could be players involved, swapping players with a little bit of money.
“Let’s talk about Jovic, who isn’t really getting a look in at Real Madrid. He could be a bargaining chip to try and lure Aubameyang over there.
“First and foremost Arsenal should have never let it get to this position in the first place.
“Soon as he gets to two years, the contract should have been on the table, ‘Sign it sign it, if you don’t in the next six months we’ll look to sell you.’
“That’s the way [it should be] – they came out with that statement that no player would get to one year left and now we’ve got not only Aubameyang but [Alexandre] Lacazette to come down to one year[next summer].
“There’s going to have to be some ruthless moves made at Arsenal.”
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