Arsenal may have had a fine start to the season, but recent speculation suggests that manager Arsene Wenger is still eager to strengthen his squad. The latest reports hint that the Gunners are eager to bring in a defensive midfielder as a replacement for the departed Alex Song.
Russia captain Igor Denisov is a name that has again been linked with a move to the Emirates, this time by the Daily Mirror. Along with teammate Aleksandr Kerzhakov, the 28-year-old is currently training with the youth team at his club Zenit St Petersburg after criticizing the wages being paid to recent big signings Hulk and Axel Witsel.
His current predicament is said to have alerted a host of Premier League clubs, with Manchester United, Liverpool, Manchester City and Arsenal all reported to be interested. Zenit coach Luciano Spalletti has said that Denisov’s future is now in his own hands.
“We don't want to take players who think only about themselves, and don't want to go forward with us,” he said, according to TalkSport. “Their return to the starting lineup depends only on them themselves."
A name long thought to be on Arsenal’s radar is Anderlecht defensive midfielder Lucas Biglia. The 26-year-old was linked with Arsenal and Real Madrid throughout the summer, while Norwich were also said to have been keen on a season-long loan deal.
It is now claimed by the Daily Mirror that Wenger will have to look elsewhere, with the Argentina international interesting Boca Juniors. Biglia responded with the following comment when asked about the reports:
"The best club in Argentina wants me? Yes it is weird. I know the coach very well,” he said, according to the Mirror.
With Biglia currently performing in the Champions League for the Belgian champions, it would be a surprise were he to move back to his home country at this stage of his career.
Arsenal could also face a battle should they pursue another of their midfield targets—Celtic’s Victor Wanyama. The Kenyan was watched by Arsenal’s scouts several times last season, while Manchester United and Queens Park Rangers also maintain an interest, according to Metro.
However, the 21-year-old has claimed that he is eager to remain with the Scottish Champions.
“All I do is concentrate on the football,” he said, according to Metro. “Celtic is a big club and we are in the Champions League so I don’t think there is anywhere better.
“I leave the transfer talks for the club and my agent but I’m really happy here and looking forward to staying for as many years as I can.”
Recent transfer news has also seen Real Madrid’s Raul Albiol emerge as a potential defensive target. Spanish publication El Mundo Deportivo has claimed that Arsenal are interested in the Spain international who has become frustrated by his lack of first-team action at the Bernabeu amid suggestions of a falling out with boss Jose Mourinho.
The center of defense would not appear to be an immediate concern for Arsenal, with Thomas Vermaelen, Per Mertesacker and Laurent Koscielny all performing well to start the season. However, the opportunity to sign an experienced international, who, at 27, is currently in his prime, would certainly be tempting for Wenger.