Arsenal have turned down the opportunity to sign Newcastle defensive midfielder Cheick Tiote, according to reports in the Daily Mail.
The Gunners have decided not to pursue the player, who is valued by Newcastle in the region of £12 million. The player is open to a move away from the Tyneside club, but after being snubbed by the London club will have to wait until the summer.
Arsenal have needed an overriding physical presence for a number of years, and Arsene Wenger would like to sign a player in the mould of Tiote but the Arsenal manager is content to wait until the summer.
Tiote - who has been restricted by injury to just ten starts this season - has been linked to the London club before in 2012 and was believed to have been in line to replace Alex Song.
Having bought a player for the future in Krystian Bielik, the emergence of Coquelin and purchasing Gabriel Paulista, Wenger believes that the club has enough depth and quality for the remainder of these season. “Number-wise we look alright and quality as well,” said the Arsene Wenger.
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The French manager stated that he is unlikely to make any more additions to his squad this month. “It looks unlikely now [to buy any players].” Before addidng, "If I wake up in the morning and someone stands in front of the door and is an exceptional player I will open the door."
Coquelin to Stay
Wenger suggested that he expects Coquelin to sign a new deal to stay at the club.
The French midfielder, who was sent on loan to Championship side Charlton last November, is out of contract at the end of the season.
In light of his impressive form since taking a starting berth in the team, Coquelin, 23, will be given the chance to remain at Arsenal and underpin his credentials.
“Coquelin is 99 per cent there,” Wenger told the press ahead of the clash with Aston Villa when asked about negotiations.