Arsenal may have the intention to finally meet Julian Draxler’s buyout clause this January, but they could still face competition from Manchester United.
Fresh reports claim that Louis van Gaal still has his scouts monitoring the young German, despite the fact he’s been high on Arsene Wenger’s wish-list for a fairly long time. At £37 million the decision on his potential investment won’t be made lightly, but Wenger is sure to see him as a player who could become world-class in the future.
With a World Cup medal under his belt, and a reputation for being a starlet with ability far exceeding his years, there would be few eyebrows raised were Wenger to agree to acquire him.
A lack of dangerous attacking options at the Emirates Stadium hasn't been a problem many critics have highlighted, but the arrival of a marquee name will help things nonetheless.
It’s not all bad news as the Gunners have beaten their rivals to open talks with Juventus defender Stephan Lichtsteiner. The north London giants are said to be in the market for a centre-back, and Lichtsteiner has plenty of experience under his belt.
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Though it's unlikely he would be purchased with the plan of disrupting the consistent partnership of Per Mertesacker and Laurent Koscielny, the 30-year-old is versatile, and he would be a cheap fix for a problem which promises to give Wenger plenty to think about moving forward.
Though Mathieu Debuchy and Calum Chambers were bought to cover the losses of Bacary Sagna and Thomas Vermaelen the Gunners still look precariously thin at the back, and if they're to launch a sustained charge for silverware they will need reinforcements post-January transfer window.
If they can’t convince him to make a switch the next name on the list looks to be Athletic Bilbao’s Aymeric Laporte, who is significantly more expensive at £32million. In that race they face competition from United once again, who seem to be intent on improving their squad early on in the New Year.
Whether or not Wenger will spend that much on a young centre-back is a topic which will be the centre of mass debate, but he certainly represents a good option for the future and so can't be altogether ruled out.