Arsenal

Arsenal

Premier League • England

Price tag set as Arsenal aim to wreak havoc on Tottenham’s first Conte signing

Mattias Svanberg Bologna

Premier League sides Arsenal and Tottenham have discovered how much it will cost to land a dynamic midfielder, according to reports.

Arsenal can rely on Thomas Partey, Granit Xhaka and Albert Sambi Lokonga in the centre of the pitch. Partey is finally starting to come into his own, while Xhaka is proving to be an important first-team member due to his experience.

Lokonga is yet to show his true potential, although the Belgian will likely grow into a regular starter under Mikel Arteta.

The Gunners are looking to get rid of Egyptian midfielder Mohamed Elneny. The 29-year-old’s contract expires in June. A January transfer may be the best solution as it would give Arsenal the chance to earn some cash.

Elneny is a target for Turkish clubs Besiktas and Galatasaray.

The player’s exit would open up a spot in Arteta’s squad for a new midfielder to come in. And they could do battle with rivals Tottenham for the capture of an exciting star.

22-year-old Mattias Svanberg is the main in question. He has been putting in some impressive displays for Bologna and the Swedish national team.

Tottenham want to make Svanberg the first signing of the Antonio Conte era. Reports put them in a ‘strong position’ to strike a deal with his current team.

Arsenal have to sell Pepe for whatever they can

Paul Merson has urged Arsenal to move on from Pepe as flop hasn’t lived up to the price tag

But Sport Witness, citing reports in Italy, claim Arsenal are also hoping to snap him up.

Svanberg is yet to sign a new contract at Bologna. With his terms running out in 2023, they face a fight to keep him from the Premier League.

The complete midfielder wants €1m in wages per season, which Arsenal and Tottenham can meet fairly easily.

A transfer will therefore come down to who offers the most. Bologna want between €15m-20m for Svanberg’s signature, according to the report.


Frank Lampard and Diego Martinez head potential replacements for Leeds boss Marcelo Bielsa


Merson predicts Arsenal loss on attacker

Meanwhile, Gunners legend Paul Merson reckons the club will take a big financial hit on Nicolas Pepe.

The £72m man has never been a consistent performer, despite his obvious ability. He is now behind the likes of Bukayo Saka, Emile Smith Rowe and Gabriel Martinelli in the pecking order.

Merson said: “I think if they could sell him in January, they’d probably sell him.

“In my opinion, I think he would go and move on if he could. He just hasn’t been consistent enough. The ones in front of him have been consistent.

“Years ago, when you got bought for a lorry load of money, the pressure was on. In this day and age, you can flop and no one says a word.

“Managers would lose their jobs on a big signing, that doesn’t happen anymore.

“They’ll probably sell him for 20-30m and lose 30-40m on him, and no one will say a dickie bird.”

READ MORE: Arsenal powerless to resist transfer despite Newcastle raid cost rising