Speculation has continued that Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger will have in excess of £35 million to spend in January, although there is plenty of doubt as to whether the money will actually be invested.
The Daily Mail believes that Wenger has yet to make a decision on his spending in the next transfer window. However, if he does enter the market, it will be to reinforce his front line. Fernando Llorente is again suggested as a likely target to provide competition for summer signing Olivier Giroud.
The Spain international striker looks set to leave Athletic Bilbao, either in January or at the end of the season, as he shows no inclination to extend a contract that expires next summer. A move for the 27-year-old could appeal to the notoriously frugal Wenger, with Llorente likely to be available for a cut-price fee.
Whether Llorente’s style would complement that of Giroud’s is doubtful, however.
Arsenal face their own contract saga in the coming months, with winger Theo Walcott yet to agree a contract extension. The 23-year-old can begin discussing a pre-contract agreement with overseas teams from January if no new deal is signed.
With that in mind, Arsenal continue to be linked with potential replacements for Walcott.
The name of Atletico Madrid’s Adrian Lopez has again be put forward over the weekend, this time by The People. A Spain international, Adrian’s versatility may appeal, given that he can play all along the front line. The 24-year-old, who helped Atletico to claim the Europe League last season by scoring 10 goals, has a release clause of £15 million, according to The People.
Arsenal have also been strongly linked with another potential Walcott replacement, in Crystal Palace’s highly-rated young winger, Wilfried Zaha. The 19-year-old has been the subject of much speculation after some stirring performances in the English Championship.
The latest wave arrived on Sunday, with the Daily Mirror reporting that Tottenham could be successful with an £8 million offer.
However, Crystal Palace co-chairman Steve Browett has insisted that Zaha will not be leaving anytime soon.
"I can assure you that Wilfried is not 'for sale,’” he said, according to the Guardian. “We hope that he'll be playing Premier League football next season. For us. Even if that doesn't happen, he's only 19 and still learning his trade in surroundings where he is comfortable and happy. He's on a five-year contract and we really don't need the money."
Another potential attacking target has emerged on Monday, with TalkSport claiming that Arsenal are one of a number of clubs with an eye on Milan midfielder Kevin-Prince Boateng. The German-born Ghana international has flourished in Italy since arriving from Portsmouth in the summer of 2010, however is said to be frustrated about Milan’s summer sales of Thiago Silva and Zlatan Ibrahimovic.
The Rossoneri currently sit a disappointing 11th in Serie A having also released a host of other experienced stars during the close season. Citing stories in Germany, TalkSport reports that Manchester United and Liverpool are also interested in the 25-year-old.