Premier League • England

Tielemans transfer fears for Arteta prompt Arsenal to bid for Xhaka colleague after World Cup connection

Granit Xhaka, Xherdan Shaqiri, Remo Freuler and Djibril Sow

Arsenal are considering making an offer for a midfielder who already knows what it takes to play alongside Granit Xhaka, according to a report.

Xhaka is one of the longest-serving players at Arsenal and has retained the faith of Mikel Arteta this season. Indeed, the Switzerland international started all 14 of their Premier League matches before the World Cup.

Scoring three goals and providing the same number of assists, as well as an additional goal in the Europa League, Xhaka has justified the contract renewal he earned last August.

But Arsenal are still thinking about how to strengthen in his position. After all, Xhaka has reached the age of 30 and only has 18 months remaining on his terms with the club.

What’s more, Arsenal might need to find someone more reliable alongside him. Thomas Partey has also been doing well this season, but Mohamed Elneny will not be the long-term answer and Albert Sambi Lokonga still has something to prove.

Therefore, the addition of a new midfielder might add further momentum to the Premier League leaders’ title challenge.

One player they have been heavily linked with is Youri Tielemans, who will be out of contract with Leicester City at the end of the season. However, a few are starting to believe they have some doubts about a deal for the Belgian star.

Hence, Arsenal fans will want to know who else their club might be looking at. One answer is emerging from the German media.

Arsenal find familiar Xhaka teammate

According to Bild, Arteta could now get Arsenal to put in a bid for Eintracht Frankfurt midfielder Djibril Sow – who already plays with Xhaka for Switzerland and has been doing so at the World Cup.

Sow has spent his club career between Switzerland and Germany, starting out with Zurich’s second team before being snapped up by Borussia Monchengladbach.

First-team opportunities there were limited, so he crossed back over the border to his country of birth with Young Boys in 2017. Two years later, he was back in the Bundesliga when Eintracht Frankfurt gave him his chance. It is one that he has taken.

In his debut season with Frankfurt, Sow played in 40 matches. A further 29 appearances followed in 2020-21, before 44 in 2021-22 culminated in a Europa League final win.

This season, Sow has played 24 times, scoring twice. He has largely operated as a defensive midfielder, so could bring some balance to the Arsenal engine room.

Djibril Sow attracting Premier League interest

However, the Gunners will have to spend big to sign him. The report from Bild relays that Nottingham Forest saw a £22million bid for Sow rejected in the summer.

Now, Eintracht will be holding out for a bigger sum of money to let go of Sow – especially with a bigger club circling.

Arsenal will have to weigh up what the best value-for-money deal might be for them. It will also depend on who is most likely to be available in January.

Leicester seem intent on keeping Tielemans until the end of his contract. Therefore, although he might be the better option, Arsenal might have a more realistic chance of signing Sow in the winter.

They are willing to spend in order to preserve their momentum from the first part of the season. Hence, Frankfurt might be bracing themselves, especially since Sow is out of contract in 2024.

A move to Arsenal would represent his first taste of Premier League football. But at the age of 25, he could be ready to take the challenge in his stride.

Besides, having Xhaka next to him would help the adaptation process thanks to their existing understanding.

Arsenal are not alone in their admiration of Sow. But they will be hoping certain factors can work in their advantage and that he would be able to justify their faith if he did arrive at the Emirates Stadium.

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