Arsenal have held discussions to sign Ligue 1 star

Houssem Aouar

Arsenal's summer has been a chaotic bubble of both controversy and excitement. 

After winning the FA Cup, they welcomed Gabriel and Willian through the door as new signings. They've also won the Community Shield are on the verge of tying star striker Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang down to a new contract.

However, there has also been some bad news.

The Gunners made 55 members of staff redundant, including some of the club's recruitment network. On top of that, Raul Sanllehi decided to leave north London behind.

Technical Director Edu Gaspar has been on quite the cull this summer, but now it appears to be more about the playing staff again. 

A move for Thomas Partey has long been touted but there's another eye-catching midfielder who could walk through the doors of the Emirates Stadium this summer. 

Arsenal may have to sell a few players to afford another big-money deal but players like Lucas Torreira, Hector Bellerin and Sokratis have all been touted with exits.

Edu and Mikel Arteta

And few supporters would complain if those three players were sold and one of their transfer targets arrived.

The Athletic's David Ornstein has previously banged the drum of Houssem Aouar to Arsenal and on Monday this week, he had another update of their pursuit of the Lyon midfield.

Aouar could cost the Londoners a fee of around £54m so won't come cheap. In fact, Arsenal have only previously spent that much on a single player on two separate occasions - Nicolas Pepe and Aubemayang. 

Speaking on the latest episode of the Ornstein and Chapman podcast, the journalist said the following:

"Arsenal have held some level of discussions around Lyon creative midfielder Houssem Aouar, it's going to be a difficult one because of the price. We know that he's a player Mikel Arteta and Arsenal hugely admire."

Houssem Aouar

GIVEMESPORT'S Matt Dawson says...

It would be a big surprise if Arsenal could pull this deal off, but if they did, they'd finally have their new Santi Cazorla.

When Dani Ceballos walked through the door early last summer, it looked as though he could step into the Spaniard's shoes.

His composure on the ball was first class and he had the eye for a pass. However, his performances were disappointing for most of the season.

Ceballos came alive in the back half of the campaign, proving vital in the club's FA Cup triumph. However, he's become a more defensive-minded player, dictating the tempo from deep.

Santi Cazorla in action for Spain

Aouar, on the other hand, gets forward and defends from the front. The 22-year-old's dribbling is mesmeric, successfully completing 2.6 take-ons per match in Ligue 1 last term. For context, Cazorla managed over two dribbles a game in two of his campaigns at Arsenal. 

Arsenal have lacked a ball carrier since the veteran left for Villarreal but Aouar would go some way to making up for his absence. 

Given his age, he could become the lynchpin of Mikel Arteta's midfield for years to come - he is that good. 

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