Arsenal are leading Everton in the race to sign Bruno Guimaraes from Lyon.
That's according to The Sun, who claim that Arsenal have accelerated a move for a big-money midfielder, since they're three men light in midfield this month. Thomas Partey and Mohamed Elneny have both gone to the Africa Cup of Nations, with Ainsley Maitland-Niles joining Roma on loan.
The Gunners have been tracking Guimaraes for a while now and were linked with the Brazilian last summer. Arteta was also keen on Guimaraes' teammate Houssem Aouar, until Martin Odegaard joined the club.
With Everton looking to strengthen in midfield too, however, Arsenal should move quickly if they want to tie up the deal.
In recent weeks, Arsenal have moved to a kind of 4-3-3, as Arteta hinted his side would when he first got the job. The Spaniard has opted for Partey to be the deepest midfielder with Granit Xhaka to his side in a kind of double-pivot – but Odegaard has dropped into a right-sided central midfield spot to complete the trio.
With Partey and Elneny missing this month – and Maitland-Niles still with an uncertain future at the club – there's a need for another player in the mix. Xhaka was heavily linked with an exit last summer, too – so the Swiss national captain may well be one of the next players to upgrade, as well.
Guimaraes can function as a no.6 and a no.8. He would be suited to either Partey's or Xhaka's role and at 24, could grow into the side with the other youthful faces.
Arsenal also have youngsters Albert Sambi Lokonga and Charlie Patino who will be pushing for places in months to come – but are are perhaps a little too young to be starting regularly just yet.
Guimaraes is valued at £27m on Transfermarkt.
More Arsenal news
Thank you for reading 5 articles this month* Join now for unlimited access
Enjoy your first month for just £1 / $1 / €1
*Read 5 free articles per month without a subscription
Join now for unlimited access
Try your first month for just £1 / $1 / €1
Mark White has been a staff writer on FourFourTwo since joining in January 2020, writing pieces for both online and the magazine. He is a keen player of the Football Manager series and creates Twitter accounts for his Fantasy Premier League team every year, before losing interest in his team every September.
Get the best features, fun and footballing frolics straight to your inbox every week.
Thank you for signing up to Four Four Two. You will receive a verification email shortly.
There was a problem. Please refresh the page and try again.