Arsenal accelerate plans to recruit spectacular forward but Liverpool links likely to drive fee through the roof

Dusan Tadic and Mohammed Kudus

Arsenal are looking to steal a march on their rivals by moving first to sign an in-demand Ajax star – but growing interest in the player is likely to drive his asking price well in excess of £40m.

The Gunners sit proudly atop of the Premier League after a magnificent start to the season. Branded the ‘real deal’ by Rio Ferdinand, they are currently five points clear of Manchester City and will be top of the table on Christmas Day. Despite that, they will still have their work cut out in holding off Pep Guardiola’s side in the title race.

In an effort, though, to maximise their chances, the club are ready to back Mikel Arteta with a significant January windfall. To that end, TEAMtalk has revealed Arsenal are seeking at least two new signings with a new deal for a prized asset trumping all.

Top of Arteta’s wishlist is a new midfielder, with links to the likes of Youri Tielemans refusing to go away. More recently, the Gunners also reportedly have former midfielder Ismael Bennacer on their radar.

In addition to a new midfielder, Arteta is also desperate to add cover and competition to his wide attack. Nicolas Pepe was allowed to depart in the summer on a season’s loan to Nice. He will likely be sold in the summer if Arsenal can find a permanent buyer.

However, both Gabriel Martinelli and Bukayo Saka remain relatively unchallenged for their places in the side. The club do have Reiss Nelson on their books, but he is one of several stars seemingly free to leave in January.

As such, it’s little surprise to see Arteta scouring the market for a player who can keep Saka and Martinelli on their toes.

Arsenal targeting move for Mohammed Kudus

Now, according to 90min, Arsenal are leading the charge to sign in-form Ajax star Mohammed Kudus.

The Ajax star has a growing reputation in the game after a starring role at the 2022 World Cup. He netted twice in his country’s 3-2 win over South Korea earlier this week, highlighting his growing confidence.

Indeed, the 22-year-old has four goals and two assists from six Champions League appearances this season. One of those – a thunderbolt in front of Liverpool’s Kop – has led to speculation the Merseysiders are also keen.

To that end, a report on Tuesday suggested Jurgen Klopp is dreaming of landing the rising Ghanaian star. He is also reportedly on Tottenham’s radar, while Everton came close to landing him over the summer.

However, the first move for Kudus’ services has seemingly arrived from Arsenal.

At this stage, no talks have taken place over his prospective transfer. However, they hope to have put themselves in the driving seat by becoming the first side to register an interest.

Ajax, though, are in no hurry to sell. Demand for Kudus is already high and that fee is already likely to be around £40m. However, should Ghana go deep into the tournament, Kudus’ profile will only rise and his valuation climb with it.

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