Arsenal Transfer News: Latest Speculation on Arsene Wenger's Top Targets

Tom SunderlandFeatured ColumnistAugust 25, 2014

ATHENS,GREECE - JANUARY 12:  Kostas Manolas of Olympiacos during the Greek Superleague match between Atromitos Athinon and Olympiacos at the Peristeri Stadium on January 12, 2014 in Athens,Greece.  (Photo by Aris Messins/EuroFootball/Getty Images)
EuroFootball/Getty Images

Arsene Wenger chose to showcase some uncommon initiative in getting a lot of his transfer business concluded early this summer, but there remains a small opening in which the Frenchman may yet round off his dealings.

Arsenal's unbeaten start to the season already has the club showing positive signs after the arrivals of Alexis Sanchez, Mathieu Debuchy and Calum Chambers.

Despite those signings, defence and midfield remain the most fervently speculated areas in which the Gunners are thought to be considering renovations, with the latest developments discussed ahead.


Kostas Manolas

TORONTO, ON - JULY 24: Giampaolo Pazzini #11 of AC Milan chases the ball against Kostas Manolas #24 of Olympiacos FC during International Champions Cup 2014 action at BMO Field July 24, 2014 in Toronto, Ontario, Canada.  (Photo by Abelimages/Getty Images)
Abelimages/Getty Images

Olympiacos turned heads this weekend after they chose to leave Kostas Manolas out of their squad for their Greek Superleague opener against Niki Volou.

According to the Daily Mail's Robin Cottle, this intensified rumours that the Gunners would make good on their interest in the defender.

However, Metro reports that talks between club and player have stalled over personal terms, while Football Italia claims Roma are favourites for Manolas' signature:

What's more, Wenger has dissuaded talk of any last-gasp transfers in general, per the Daily Mail's Simon Gholam: "Honestly, we are not close to signing anybody. I have nothing special to add on that at the moment."

Following the departure of Thomas Vermaelen, a host of centre-back talents have been linked with Wenger's side, and at a reported £6.5 million, Manolas would be among the more cost efficient.


Sami Khedira

RIO DE JANEIRO, BRAZIL - JULY 13:  Sami Khedira of Germany celebrates with his medal after defeating Argentina 1-0 in extra-time during the 2014 FIFA World Cup Brazil Final match between Germany and Argentina at Maracana on July 13, 2014 in Rio de Janeiro
Martin Rose/Getty Images

The immediate future of Sami Khedira has taken yet another twist after Carlo Ancelotti issued a clear hands-off message regarding his midfielder's potential sale.

Unless the Champions League holders cash in now, they risk losing Khedira for free when his contract expires next summer, but Ancelotti is quoted by The Guardian's Dan Lucas as saying that his star is going nowhere: “The issue with Khedira has also been resolved. He’s staying and we’re happy that’s the case.”

The U-turn came just a day after Ancelotti was reported by ESPN FC's Dermot Corrigan to have said that his player would be free to leave the Bernabeu:

Irrespective of the prospect of seeing Khedira leave for nothing, it appears Real now want the German's talents around for the 2014-15 season, leaving Arsenal needing to look elsewhere for recruits.


Adrien Rabiot

Wenger will look to add to his French contingent with the purchase of Paris Saint-Germain youngster Adrien Rabiot, who is known to be stalling on a new contract at Parc des Princes.  

TOULON, FRANCE - MAY 29:  Adrien Rabiot of France puts a thumbs up towards the fans after their victory during the Toulon Tournament Group A match between France v Portugal at the Leo Legrange Stadium on May 29, 2014 in Toulon, France.  (Photo by Christop
Christopher Lee/Getty Images

That's according to the Daily Star, with PSG boss Laurent Blanc quoted as saying that his prospect has been offered a new deal but chosen not to accept: "I want Rabiot to remain in Paris. The decision is not mine, he might leave the club. But he has had an offer to extend his contract with PSG."

PARIS, FRANCE - MARCH 12:  Adrien Rabiot of Paris Saint-Germain (C) battles with Omer Toprak (L) and Philipp Wollscheid of Bayer Leverkusen (R) during the UEFA Champions League Round of 16 second leg match between Paris Saint-Germain FC and Bayer Leverkus
Dean Mouhtaropoulos/Getty Images

Rabiot fits the Arsenal profile in that he's young and can play in the deep-lying midfield role that many believe the club require investment in.

Should Rabiot remain in Paris this season, he would be available as a free transfer next summer—provided he doesn't pen a new deal—which may be a proposition the Gunners are willing to hold out for.