Newcastle deem January Arsenal raid ‘realistic’, though face West Ham duel

Steve Pearson
Arsenal trio Alexandre Lacazette, Gabriel Martinelli and Nicolas Pepe 2020

Newcastle think a January raid on Arsenal is perfectly viable despite interest from West Ham, and one pundit has claimed it would be a “great signing” for the Magpies.

Once a new manager and sporting director are installed, attention at Newcastle will quickly turn to the winter window. With near-bottomless funds at their disposal, Newcastle are expected to spend big in January.

In contrast, Arsenal did most of their shopping in the summer. Six first-teamers were signed as Edu and co splashed the cash. However, moving players out of the club on permanent deals proved a trickier task.

Alexandre Lacazette is one player who was linked with a move away. The Frenchman is in the final year of his contract at the Emirates.

The 30-year-old has been in fine form of late, though there has been little suggestion he is likely to pen fresh terms in north London. As such, the January window is the final opportunity Arsenal will have to generate a fee.

West Ham had previously been linked. David Moyes is short of depth behind Michail Antonio and has a Europa League campaign to juggle.

However, the Daily Express report Newcastle are in the frame. Citing the Daily Star, they claim Lacazette is ‘on the club’s radar’

Furthermore, Newcastle reportedly see Lacazette as a ‘realistic’ signing given his contract status.

Arsenal director Edu to sanction mass clear-out

Arsenal technical director Edu will reportedly sanction a mass clear-out of seven first-team players in January, with more news on Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain and Dominic Calvert-Lewin.

Arsenal would reportedly allow Lacazette to leave if a suitable bid is lodged. Stumping up an amount Arsenal deem worthy won’t be a difficult task for Newcastle.

Should Newcastle go on to sign Lacazette, former Premier League striker Kevin Phillips believes the Magpies would be pulling off a tremendous piece of business.

Speaking to online outlet Football Insider, Phillips said: “I have always been a big fan of Lacazette. I think he’s a great player. He would be an amazing signing for Newcastle.

Arsenal's Alexandre Lacazette warming up before the Premier League match at the Emirates Stadium, London

“He needs to play week in, week out. I get the impression he feels he is not loved at Arsenal. Perhaps he feels he does not get the credit he deserves.

“In my opinion, he is a class player. If you played him week in, week out, you would reap the rewards.

“If I was a Newcastle fan and Lacazette came in, I’d be very excited. I know he is blessed with a lot of talent. He’d be a great signing in January.”

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Arsenal outcast living dangerously on loan

Meanwhile, a report in France claims Matteo Guendouzi is winning over the Marseille fans, but his attitude is likely to see him end up in trouble with opposition players.

The 22-year-old is currently on a season-long loan in the south of France after being frozen out by the Gunners

The Frenchman’s game-time fell to just 24 league outings in his final season in north London with his suspect temperament once again surfacing. Guendouzi was excluded from training and left out of matchday squads after a post-match altercation with Brighton’s Neal Maupay.

He went back to his homeland this summer, inking a 12-month deal with Les Phoceens. The contract includes an option-to-buy depending on certain conditions being met.

He has likely kicked his last ball for the Gunners, with his Emirates deal due to expire in June next year. The Marseille fans seem to have accepted the divisive schemer. But French publication L’Equipe (via Sport Witness) carry a quote from an unnamed opponent suggesting that trouble is always on the horizon.

It read: “He insults freely but he knows very well with whom he allows himself to behave like that. One day he’ll pick on the wrong person and it will end very badly.”

READ MORE: Pundit claims £35m Arsenal-linked star is ‘without a doubt’ worth it