Lorenzo Insigne is "honoured" by Arsenal interest

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Napoli striker Lorenzo Insigne is flattered by reports linking him with a shock £17m move to Arsenal and is in particular proud to held in high esteem by Gunners boss Arsene Wenger, according to his agent Antonio Ottaiano.

Insigne is currently being watched very closely by Arsenal with a view to a summer swoop, but Wenger is biding his time and waiting to see how the diminutive forward fares at the World Cup for Italy before making his interest concrete.

The 23-year-old was a key figure for Napoli last season and has not been put up for sale by the Serie A giants, but regardless Ottaiano has revealed that his client is "honoured" to be mentioned in connection with the Premier League giants regardless.

Ottaiano is quoted by the Daily Star as telling TuttoMercatoWeb: "We take into account the praising reports that Wenger has given about the player.

"We are honoured that a club like Arsenal could have Lorenzo on their wish list.

However, from here to take it to the next level, that is a possible transfer, there is a huge mountain in between named Napoli.

"The club [Napoli] consider him without a shadow of a doubt as one of their cardinal players for their ambitious project."

Wenger is currently actively pursuing a series of new attacking options as he find genuine competition for places, particularly to ease the burden on improved but overworked Olivier Giroud in attack.

Insigne is far from a lone central striker but did score nine times in all competitions last season, able to provide a versatile option and play in a central playmaker role or from either flank.

Napoli are under no obligation to sell as they build for next season's Champions League and a bid to dethrone Juventus in Serie A, but if Wenger is serious about making quality additions Azzurri boss Rafael Benitez could well be tempted to do business.

The Neopolitans have also been consistently linked with Gunners captain Thomas Vermaelen and may be persuaded to attempt a part-exchange deal, although Insigne's World Cup commitments mean we are unlikely to hear anything concrete on the proposed switch until next month at the very earliest.

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