Arsenal consider £15m summer move for Alex Song replacement

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Arsene Wenger has targeted Bayern Munich midfielder Luiz Gustavo as his principal summer transfer target, according to

The Brazilian star has struggled to hold down a place in the Bundesliga leaders' midfield, alerting Arsenal to the possible opportunity of signing him at the end of the season.

Gustavo is valued at around £15m, but while Wenger made an initial enquiry over his availability in January, the north London club decided against submitting an official bid after Bayern indicated they were unwilling to sell half-way through the season.

The 25-year-old is believed to be Arsenal's main target after they failed to reach an agreement for the transfer of West Ham's Mohamed Diame. The Gunners reportedly backed out of a deal to sign Diame after they came to the conclusion that the Sengelese international would not improve their current options - Jack Wilshere, Mikel Arteta, Abou Diaby, Francois Coquelin and Aaron Ramsey currently.

Gustavo has made just 17 appearances this season, after finding first-team opportunities limited since the big-money arrival of Javi Martinez from Athletic Bilbao last summer. The Bavarian giants currently sit 15 points clear of Borussia Dortmund in the Bundesliga, and they face Arsenal in their Champions League last-16 first-leg on Tuesday evening at the Emirates Stadium.

The Brazilian's contract with the German club runs until 2015, but the Gunners are hopeful of securing a deal as they look to replace the departed Alex Song.

The Cameroonian international left for Barcelona last season, but Wenger failed to sign a like-for-like replacement for the Nou Camp-bound midfielder before the transfer deadline closed.


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