Premier League • England

Arsenal transfers: Irresistible deal for 82-goal free agent gathers pace as Arteta looks to sign dynamic new trio

Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta

Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta

Arsenal are reportedly inching closer to three early but significant summer signings that will seriously give the Gunners an added new dimension next season.

Mikel Arteta’s side have made rapid strides during the 2022/23 season, finishing as runners-up to Manchester City. And while they were still be pained by missing out on the Premier League crown, when the dust settles they can still reflect on an excellent campaign.

However, Arteta and Edu are already hard at work at strengthening their squad and potentially going one better next season. Moreover, the club’s return to the Champions League after a six-year absence gives them further need to bolster their ranks.

And while funds for strengthening will not be unlimited, Arteta does have several ambitious signings in mind.

Furthermore, Arteta has seemingly outlined eight names who can leave Arsenal and to add more funds to his kitty.

Arteta’s main focus of attention will be in midfield with Declan Rice a well-documented target.

The England man is pushing to leave West Ham this summer, who he will hope to lead to UEFA Conference League glory in his final appearance.

The 24-year-old wants to play in the Champions League – something Arsenal can provide – and a move across London is starting to gather pace.

And while West Ham are likely to demand a lofty fee for the star, reports indicate the Hammers might not quite achieve as much as they would like.

However, Rice will be far from the only midfield addition at Arsenal this summer. And with Granit Xhaka and potentially Thomas Partey moving on, two other impressive signings are also seemingly in the works.

READ MORE: Rice value creeping down as Arsenal optimism grows that a deal can be struck

Arsenal want Maddison and Rice, while Gundogan could also sign

In addition to Rice, the Gunners are also looking to bring in Leicester star James Maddison.

The twice-capped England man will depart the King Power regardless of whether the Foxes are relegated or not. His deal is due to expire in summer 2024 and Leicester cannot afford to risk losing him as a free agent.

The 26-year-old has been in excellent form over the last two seasons, outlining himself as one of the Premier League’s most creative players. And with 55 goals from 202 appearances at Leicester, he boasts an impressive record from midfield.

He is also wanted by Newcastle, though Arsenal would be favourites were Arteta to make a concrete move. And they could part fund his signing by allowing Emile Smith Rowe to leave, with Aston Villa among his suitors.

Maddison would cost Arsenal a fee of around £50m.

And finally, Arsenal also remain optimistic they can still persuade Ilkay Gundogan to move to Emirates this summer.

The Manchester City star will be a free agent and finds himself in serious demand.

Indeed, having scored nine goals this season, his performances have been as important as anyone during the run-in and helping City over the line.

With 82 career goals in total, Barcelona are reportedly leading the chase to prise the 32-year-old away from City.

Arteta gives Arsenal a chance to sign Gundogan

However, The Guardian now claims Arsenal have a genuine chance of securing his signature – thanks to Arteta.

The report argues that Gundogan is sorely tempted by one final career challenge. And if City were to win the Treble this season, he would consider leaving at the very top.

Furthermore, the presence of former City coach Arteta at Arsenal means he could yet be tempted to link back up with the Spaniard.

City, for their part, would like to keep the player, offering him an increased three-year contract to stay.

The article claims that Gundogan, though, is currently putting thoughts on his future on the backburner.

And any decision is reportedly on hold until after the Champions League final in Istanbul on June 10.

If Arsenal and Arteta can land all three players then the Gunners will have a seriously strong midfield next season.

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