Premier League • England

Arsenal draw up explosive four-man January transfer shortlist as Arteta dreams big in push for title glory

Arsenal are hoping to sign Ivan Toney and Ousmane Dembele

Arsenal are hoping to sign Ivan Toney and Ousmane Dembele

Arsenal have reportedly drawn up a shortlist of four players they would love to sign in the January transfer window, with Mikel Arteta hoping to bring in Ivan Toney and one other attacker to secure Premier League title glory.

The Gunners pushed Manchester City hard in the title race last season, leading the table for much of the season only to eventually run out of steam and finish five points adrift of Pep Guardiola’s merciless machine. However, with Arsenal unbeaten in the league so far – they currently sit second after six wins and two draws from eight games so far – there is a growing belief that this could finally be their year.

Those hopes grew after Arsenal managed to get one Manchester City last time out, a deflected Gabriel Martinelli strike securing a 1-0 win on October 8.

However, with the Gunners running out of steam last season and injuries ultimately catching up on them a little, Arteta, alongside sporting director Edu, have done their best to raise the quality on offer in Arsenal’s squad.

To that end, the club allowed Arteta and Co a £200m summer spree that saw Declan Rice, Kai Havertz, Jurrien Timber and David Raya all arrive to bring in serious upgrades on those previously on offer.

And while the jury is still out on Havertz – Arteta has been urged to drop the German for Saturday’s trip to face Chelsea – Rice and Raya have certainly made their impact felt.

However, a strong school of thought suggests Arsenal still need to bolster their attack with neither Gabriel Jesus or Eddie Nketiah seen as prolific enough to get the Gunners over the line.

READ MORE ~ The Premier League table of 2023: Arsenal sit second with impressive points tally

Arsenal want to sign Ivan Toney and also add a new winger

For that reason, we revealed earlier this week that Arteta is pushing hard to bring Toney to Arsenal in January with the Brentford striker seen as the final piece in the jigsaw in their title quest.

Rated at £80m, that is a view shared by the Daily Mirror, though they also claim that, in an ideal world, Arteta would also like to sign some serious cover and competition for Arsenal golden boy Bukayo Saka.

As a result, and while they admit that financially such a double signing would be tough, they claim Arteta has drawn up a shortlist of three signings who could be targeted to play on the Arsenal right.

Top of that wanted list is Wolves star Pedro Neto, who is enjoying an excellent season at Molineux. The Portuguese star sits joint top of the Premier League assists table with five goal contributions so far.

He is tied to the club until 2027, but reports of late have suggested he could be lured away if a big-money bid arrives on the table in 2024 with Arsenal long-term admirers of the 23-year-old.

Competition for Neto is tough, however, meaning Arsenal also have another couple of big names under consideration.

First up, the club are also reportedly looking at Ousmane Dembele, whose time at PSG could be cut short early.

The World Cup winner only moved to Paris over the summer, contributing two assists so far. He is contracted to 2028 at the Parc des Princes after arriving from Barcelona, but it is thought a hefty bid from Arsenal could seriously tempt them to cash in.

Gunners also chasing Dani Olmo signing

However, per the report, their No 1 target is RB Leipzig attacker Dani Olmo, who has developed into one of the Bundesliga’s leading lights.

The Spanish star has 26 goals and 20 assists from 126 appearances and reportedly fits their brief as an intelligent and positionally-flexible player.

Olmo is also on Manchester City’s shopping list as a would-be successor to Kevin De Bruyne, and reportedly has a €60m (£51.2m) exit clause in his deal.

And while that appears on the north side of what Arsenal would like to spend, it is believed that the 25-year-old very much figures highly on Arteta’s shopping list.

Whether deals for both Toney and a wide player can be done in January remains to be seen and Arsenal may need to balance their books first before sanctioning both deals.

However, the focus at Arsenal is now very much on quality over quantity with Edu and Arsenal now feeling they have close to the perfect squad and one capable of challenging for the game’s top honours.

DON’T MISSArteta urged to make ‘no-brainer’ Arsenal signing, with current forward struggling in four key areas