It promises to be a busy few days for Arsenal before the transfer window finally comes to a close on Friday evening. Manager Arsene Wenger has admitted he is looking to bring in players in to strengthen a squad weakened by the departures of Robin van Persie and Alex Song. Speculation continues to swell as to the identity of the player, or indeed, players, that Wenger believes can help boost a team that began the Premier League campaign with two goalless draws.
Having missed out on one loan signing from Spain in Nuri Sahin, the Gunners are said to be pushing for a similar deal for Barcelona's Ibrahim Afellay. The agent of the Dutch wide midfielder has revealed that his client has been told he can join another side on-loan for the coming campaign.
Afellay missed much of last season through injury and is likely to struggle to get a run of games under new coach Tito Vilanova given the impressive array of attacking options at his disposal. The 26-year-old is currently fit, however, having turned out for the Netherlands in their disappointing run at Euro 2012.
According to the Daily Mirror, Wenger has long admired Afellay, who may be the "special player" that the Frenchman claimed he was looking for in the remaining days of the transfer window.
Competition is expected to be fierce for Afellay, though, with Barcelona-based publication El Mundo Deportivo suggesting that Tottenham, Liverpool, Newcastle and Inter are also interested. Agent Rob Jansen admitted that "we are talking to several clubs."
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Another name said to be interesting a variety of clubs is Mapou Yanga-Mbiwa. Arsenal have long been linked to the Montpellier central defender, but according to Metro, Chelsea could be set to jump in and pip their Premier League rivals to the signing.
Metro claims that Arsenal scouts again watched the 23-year-old in action against Marseille on Sunday, but Wenger has yet to sanction a firm offer for a player who made his France debut earlier this month.
Wenger has suggested that he is looking for a defender and Yanga-Mbiwa may fit the bill, especially given that he has also appeared at right-back-a position where Arsenal are short with an injury to Bacary Sagna.
The sale of Song has also left Arsenal short in midfield and speculation continues to suggest that the Gunners will move for either of the France international midfielders Yohan Cabaye or Yann M'Vila.
The Express claims that Arsenal are said to battle it out with North-London rivals Tottenham for the pair in the coming days. According to the report, Newcastle are anticipating offers from both clubs in the coming days for Cabaye.
It remains difficult to envisage serious interested form Arsenal in Cabaye, however. Wenger revealed yesterday that he would be interested in a midfielder who is "completely defensive." Cabaye, a natural playmaker in the mold of Mikel Arteta, certainly does not fit that bill.
M'Vila, who arsenal have been linked with all summer, would be a more natural fit to provide a tenacious presence in front of the back four. According to the Express, Rennes will demand £15 million for their midfielder.