Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger has suggested that young Crystal Palace winger Wilfried Zaha is among his list of targets ahead of the January transfer window. With the Gunners’ stuttering form, there is big pressure on the club to invest in the playing squad come the New Year and 20-year-old Zaha has been one of the names most frequently linked with a move to the Emirates in recent times.
“We are looking at every player who could strengthen our squad,” Wenger said, according to the Daily Mirror. “He’s [Zaha] not more on the list than anybody else."
The Mirror claims that Arsenal will make a £7 million bid for Zaha when the next transfer window opens. But with the likes of Manchester United and Manchester City also said to be interested, Arsenal look set to face some serious competition for the man who won his first England cap against Sweden earlier this month.
Palace are also unlikely to accept a bid of £7 million after their co-chairman Steve Parish recently claimed that he valued the Ivory Coast born player at £20 million.
Wenger’s priority in January, though, is likely to be bringing in a striker to provide support for Olivier Giroud. While Schalke’s Klaas-Jan Huntelaar has been strongly linked of late, he is not the only name on the agenda, according to the gossip pages.
Like Huntelaar, Athletic Bilbao’s Fernando Llorente is set to be out of contract next summer, potentially making him an attractive cut-price option for Wenger. TalkSport claims that Arsenal, along with Liverpool and Manchester City are all monitoring the Spain international’s situation.
Llorente has barely featured for Athletic this season after failing to sign a new contract and the 27-year-old has now suggested his time at San Mames is coming to an end.
“Hopefully I can get a few goals by the end,” he said, according to TalkSport. “The more the merrier—and I'd like to leave the team as high in the table as I can."
Another striker with an impending contract standoff is also said to be on Arsenal’s agenda. Metro reports that Borussia Dortmund’s Robert Lewandowski, whose current deal is set to expire in the summer of 2014, is being monitored by the Gunners as well as Manchester United
However, Dortmund chief executive, Hans-Joachim Watzke, has suggested that the Polish 24-year-old will be staying put for the time being.
“It is a simple numbers game. It could make financially more sense to play a good season with Lewandowski instead of selling him and receiving a high transfer fee,” he said, according to Metro.
“We are under no financial pressure to act on this.”
There is also a new name linked to the Gunners on Tuesday with the Daily Star reporting that Wenger is monitoring the progress of Reading center-back Sean Morrison. The 21-year-old has recently broken into the newly-promoted side’s first team and has put in some impressive performances.
The former Swindon man may not be easy to procure, however, having just signed a four-year contract at the Madejski.