Mikel Arteta tipped to make shock late Arsenal raid for French striker billed as ‘next Mbappe’ – but Man Utd, Liverpool, Tottenham also keen

Elye Wahi, Montpellier striker, in action against Monaco in Ligue 1 game at Stade Louis II

Arsenal are reportedly considering a late transfer window swoop to bring in a 20-year-old Montpellier forward who has close to a goal every other game so far this season.

Mikel Arteta’s side are looking for further additions to their squad in the final days of the window. Sat five points clear at the top of the table, the Gunners have a great chance to end their 19-year wait to be crowned Premier League winners.

So far this month, the Gunners have brought in Leandro Trossard and Jakub Kiwior. But they are on the hunt for at least one more addition before the window slams shut with Arteta keen to bolster his midfield.

And with Thomas Partey suffering an injury in Friday night’s FA Cup exit at Manchester City, the Gunners are ready to raise the stakes for No 1 target Moises Caicedo.

To prise the Ecuadorian from Brighton, Arsenal will need to raise their initial £60m offer. And any deal for Caicedo could end up topping the £72m club-record deal paid to Lille for Nicolas Pepe.

However, it seems the Gunners might not be done there with a second deal also in the pipeline.

And according to Foot Mercato, Arsenal are also looking to bring in another option to play up front.

Arteta’s side are currently relying on Eddie Nketiah to lead the line in the absence of Gabriel Jesus. The Brazilian remains sidelined from the knee injury suffered at the World Cup.

And while desperate to return to training this week, Arteta is warning he may have to rein in his expectations.

Arteta can ask Gabriel Martinelli to fill in up front if required. And January addition Trossard could also step up to play there in an emergency.

Arsenal track Montpellier striker Elye Wahi

However, another striker could yet come in before the window shuts in the form of Montpellier striker Elye Wahi.

The Gunners have reportedly been keeping a close watch on Wahi in recent weeks. Indeed, he recently scored his 20th Ligue 1 goal of his career, becoming only the second player to achieve the feat, after Kylian Mbappe, before their 20th birthdays.

This season, Wahi has seven goals and one assist from 18 Ligue 1 appearances. And his performances for La Paillade has seen a number of big sides from the Premier League take note.

Per Foot Mercato, though, that chase is being led by Arsenal. And while they say a summer deal looks the more likely, a significant offer now could yet convince Montpellier to sell.

Arsenal reportedly lead that chase, though the report suggests several of their Premier League rivals have also noted Wahi’s progress. And all of Tottenham, Manchester United, Manchester City and Liverpool are also reportedly among his admirers.

Gunners focus remains on Caicedo

Whether Arsenal make the move now remains to be seen. Arteta, though, has suggested he is happy with his attacking options and he will hope Jesus can soon return to play a part in their title push.

As such, the only late addition at Arsenal will surely only come in midfield.

With Caicedo the subject of their attention, that move appears to be progressing quickly. He has asked to leave Brighton, with the Seagulls responding by banning him from training with immediate effect. That also rules Caicedo out their squad to face Liverpool in the FA Cup on Sunday.

Any deal is likely to set Arsenal back around £70m – and with the best part of £45 already shelled out on Kiwior and Trossard – a fourth signing in Wahi does seem unlikely.

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