Football

Arsenal in fight for Ivorian international

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Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger will face a battle with PSV to sign Ivorian striker Lacina Traore.

Heavily linked with a move to the Emirates, it appears that Arsenal now have competition in the race to sign the teenage striker.

Reports in Holland state that Eindhoven made a last-gasp bid at the end of the January transfer window to try and lure Traore to the Philips Stadium, but they fell short and ran out of time.

Dutch publication Algemeen Dagblad report that Fred Rutten attempted to take advantage as Arsene Wenger pondered a move, but the Dutch giants could not agree terms with FC Cluj and may have missed out on the 19-year-old.

Frenchman Wenger decided against a move for the striker after perceived problems with securing a work permit. Footballers outside the EU should technically play 75% of international fixtures over the previous two years to secure a move to the UK, a stumbling block that would be nearly impossible to overcome on appeal.

That said, Wenger has been tracking Traore for some time. Linked with a handful of striikers, it appears Traore is one of his top targets and the Gunners boss could well push for a move in the summer.

An unidentified source told Sport.co.uk before the end of the transfer window: “I have been in touch with one scout from Arsenal. I can confirm that it is true that they are interested in Lacina, but they will not make an offer during the January transfer window for him.

The former Stade d'Abidjan star knows about the rumours, and is understandably excited about the prospect of playing in the Premier League. "It would be a dream for me to get to play on a team so great," said Traore.

"It is sensational to hear Wenger is watching me. I could be a success in England."

Loic Remy is another name linked with a move to north London, and Wenger will make his decision on Traore or any other striker in the summer months.

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Topics:
Arsenal
Football
Premier League

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