Arsenal Transfer News: Serge Aurier Interest Reported Amid PSG Ban, Top Rumours

Stuart NewmanFeatured ColumnistFebruary 20, 2016

PARIS, FRANCE - FEBRUARY 03:  Serge Aurier of Paris Saint-Germain reacts during warmup before  the Ligue 1 game between Paris Saint-Germain and FC Lorient at Parc des Princes on February 3, 2016 in Paris, France.  (Photo by Aurelien Meunier/Getty Images)
Aurelien Meunier/Getty Images

According to French outlet L'Equipe (via Mark Brus of Metro), Arsenal are reportedly set to reignite their interest in Paris Saint-Germain right-back Serge Aurier, who is currently serving an indefinite suspension for recent misconduct.

The Ivory Coast international directed homophobic slurs at several PSG personnel, including manager Laurent Blanc, and subsequently has a big question mark hanging over his future at the club.

That much has put Arsenal on red alert, as they've seemingly been tracking the defender's progress for many months.

PARIS, FRANCE - FEBRUARY 03:  Serge Aurier of Paris Saint-Germain kicks the ball during the Ligue 1 game between Paris Saint-Germain and FC Lorient at Parc des Princes on February 3, 2016 in Paris, France.  (Photo by Aurelien Meunier/Getty Images)
Aurelien Meunier/Getty Images

The Gunners are in their best position to win the Premier League in over a decade, yet manager Arsene Wenger is still under immense pressure to bolster his squad.

And as Mathieu Debuchy's time at the Emirates looks to have come to end, Arsenal are now looking a little short at right-back, with Hector Bellerin the only natural choice.

Aurier looks an ideal candidate to boost Wenger's full-back artillery, as he was one of PSG's standout performers before being shrouded in controversy. Here's a reminder of why the Ivorian is still very much a hot target:

It's still unknown how the 23-year-old's situation will pan out, with Blanc telling reporters there's no way of knowing how long Aurier will be banned for.

From Dev Trehan of Sky Sports: "The club will take a decision, not the coach. I will certainly have a conversation with him, but everyone will have to respect the decision made by the club. After that is handed down, we will know whether we can count on him for the remainder of the season."

A sacking is certainly a possibility, which means Arsenal could pick up Aurier on a free transfer. However, Jonathan Johnson of beIN Sports thinks PSG will still look to cash in on the right-back:

[Considering] the nature of modern football and the likelihood of a European rival picking him up as a bargain free transfer, that option [sacking] has probably already been ruled out.

What is more likely is that Les Parisiens slap Aurier with a heavy fine and an internal ban from the senior side with an ultimate sale in mind.

So, it's up to Wenger to determine whether Aurier is too disruptive a figure for his squad before making contact with the French champions.

As one door opens, another closes. Arsenal reportedly have "no chance" of signing long-term target Gonzalo Higuain when the transfer window opens again.

The striker's agent and brother Nicolas told Radio Kiss Kiss Napoli that a future away from Naples isn't a possibility. From James Whaling of the Daily Mirror, "We have a contract and there's no chance of playing elsewhere, but we can't think about the Champions League now, but just about playing every game."

NAPLES, ITALY - FEBRUARY 07:  Gonzalo Higuain of Napoli celebrates the opening goal during the Serie A match between SSC Napoli and Carpi FC at Stadio San Paolo on February 7, 2016 in Naples, Italy.  (Photo by Maurizio Lagana/Getty Images)
Maurizio Lagana/Getty Images

The Gunners have been chasing a world-class striker for many a transfer window now, but Higuain won't be the answer to their problems.

Arsenal look to have turned a corner this season, with fans' pre-season optimism finally coming to light. However, they face the toughest test of the credentials over the next few weeks.

Premier League clashes with Manchester United and Tottenham Hotspur will go some way to showing how ready the Gunners are to win the title. Then there's the small matter of a UEFA Champions League meeting with the best team on the planet, Barcelona.