Arsenal Transfer News and Rumours Tracker: Week of July 21
With Alexis Sanchez and Mathieu Debuchy already in the bag, Arsenal's transfer activity seems set to continue apace.
At the top of that list will surely be a goalkeeper and a centre-half, with Lukasz Fabianski having joined Swansea and Thomas Vermaelen's future far from certain.
This slideshow will ensure you're up to date with all the transfer stories and rumours about Arsenal's activity this week. Check in over the next few days, as there will be regular updates on any further developments.
—Last Update: Friday, July 25—
Joel Campbell and Mario Balotelli Linked with Swap Deal
Friday, July 25
Reports in Italy indicate that Arsenal could be prepared to engage in an audacious swap deal. Italian newspaper Tuttosport (h/t The Metro) have claimed that AC Milan have offered Arsene Wenger the chance to sign Mario Balotelli for £7.9 million plus Joel Campbell.
Milan are on the look-out for a quick winger and have identified Campbell as someone who fits the bill.
The explosiveness of Balotelli's talent is matched only by his temper, and it remains to be seen whether or not Wenger would be prepared to gamble on such a combustible character.
Lukas Podolski Urges Sami Khedira to Join Arsenal
Thursday, July 24
Arsenal's German forward Lukas Podolski has urged his international team-mate Sami Khedira to join him at Arsenal. Speaking to Sport Bild (h/t Goal.com), Podolski said:
I didn't have to [try to convince Khedira to join Arsenal].
Sami knows how much fun he could have with me, Mesut [Ozil] and Per [Mertesacker] at Arsenal. We had a great time together at the World Cup and I would like it very much if he comes to London.
Whether or not Arsenal are prepared to match either Real Madrid's price-tag or Khedira's wage demands remains to be seen. However, it seems Arsenal's existing German contingent would be delighted to welcome another compatriot.
David Ospina Edges Ever Closer to Arsenal
Wednesday, July 23
Speculation is mounting suggesting that David Ospina's arrival at Arsenal is imminent.
David Hytner of The Guardian claims that a £3 million deal is now "agreed", and all that remains is for the player to arrive in London, agree personal terms and undertake a medical.
Ospina is likely to start the season as deputy to Wojciech Szczesny, but the Colombian international will doubtless push the current No. 1 very hard. There is likely to be fierce competition for the goalkeeper's jersey at Arsenal next season.
Atletico Madrid in for Spanish Pair
Weds, July 23
Atlético Madrid have added Arsenal left-back Nacho Monreal to their list of transfer targets that already included Santi Cazorla.
Monreal is understood to be concerned at the prospect of starting the season as deputy to Kieran Gibbs at Arsenal. He had expected to be Arsenal’s first-choice left-back when he signed for £8 million from Málaga in January last year, but has gradually slipped behind Gibbs.
Having already suffered the indignity of losing his squad number to Alexis Sanchez this summer, Monreal could well be unsettled by the prospect of playing back-up to Gibbs. Cazorla, however, is likely to stay: it's just a matter of months since he signed a new deal in London.
Javi Manquillo Edging Towards Liverpool
Tuesday, July 22
Arsenal have been linked extensively with a move for young Spanish right-back Javi Manquillo. However, The Metro now reports on claims in Spanish daily AS that the full-back will instead move to Liverpool:
Arsenal have been in talks with Atletico for the last two weeks over a deal for Manquillo, with the Gunners optimistic of agreeing a season-long loan with a view to a permanent deal.
However, AS reports that Liverpool have now moved in and look set to seal the signing of the 20-year-old in the next few days.
The newspaper says that Manquillo was unsure of the amount of playing time he’d get at the Emirates Stadium and has been persuaded by Brendan Rodgers that his future is with the Reds instead.
The move to sign Manquillo had been part of a plan to loan out Carl Jenkinson to give him regular first-team football. If Arsene Wenger is wedded to that strategy he'll have to identify another right-back to offer cover for Mathieu Debuchy.
Reports in France Suggest David Ospina Deal Is Close
Monday, July 21
French newspaper Nice-Matin (French language) report that Arsenal have come to an agreement with Nice for the transfer of goalkeeper David Ospina.
The Colombian informed his club he would not be signing a contract extension, and it now seems his move to the Gunners could be confirmed in "the coming hours."
That terminology is used rather loosely on the continent, but it does seem a switch may be imminent. His arrival would provide Wojciech Szczesny with fierce competition for the No. 1 shirt.
Rumours Continue About Sami Khedira Switch
Tuesday, July 22
Rumours continue to swirl around about the possibility of Sami Khedira moving to Arsenal. French newspaper L'Equipe (via the Express) are the latest to get in on the act, suggesting Arsenal are still in the running for the German midfielder:
Arsenal were thought to have turned their attention elsewhere after becoming frustrated with their attempts to sign the German World Cup winner.
Southampton's Morgan Schneiderlin, Bayer Leverkusen star Lars Bender and Sporting Lisbon ace William Carvalho were mooted as new targets.
However, L'Equipe believe the Gunners are not out of the race to sign Khedira, who is also wanted by Chelsea.
It has even been suggested that Real could drop their asking price to £20m to ensure Khedira's departure.
Khedira may yet end up at Arsenal, but there's a way to go before any deal approaches completion.