There have been continued reports over the weekend that Arsenal are looking to improve their attacking options in next month’s transfer window with a move for Barcelona’s David Villa.
The forward has featured only sparingly this season since his return from a broken leg. According to the Daily Mail, Arsenal may look to take the 31-year-old on-loan until the end of the season with a view to a permanent move.
Spanish journalist Guillem Balague last week claimed that Villa would not depart until at least the end of the season, however.
The Sunday Mirror reports that Arsenal have made an inquiry for Villa but are hesitant about paying £12 million and wages of £100,000 a week for a player of his age and with a serious injury recently behind him.
“Arsenal have asked Barcelona about David Villa, but the manager has a lot of concerns,” a source is reported to have told the Mirror.
With a move for Villa ruled out, Gunners boss Arsene Wenger is believed to have instead put Atletico Madrid forward Adrian Lopez at the top of his wanted list.
“It is looking increasingly likely Adrian is the man he will go for,” the source added. “He is younger version on Villa and will fit into Arsenal’s wage structure.”
This is far from the first time that Arsenal have been linked with a move for Spain international Adrian. The 24-year-old enjoyed a fine first season with Atleti last year, highlighted by scoring 10 goals to help his side claim the Europa League.
It has been a different story this campaign, though, as Adrian has largely been reduced to a role off the bench due to the form of Diego Costa. He scored his second goal of the season as he grabbed the winner against Celta Vigo on Friday.
Adrian is reported to have a buyout clause of £15 million.
On Saturday, the Daily Mirror reported that Arsenal are still chasing Crystal Palace winger Wilfried Zaha and are set to make a bid in January. The 20-year-old has been linked to a host of Premier League clubs and it is claimed that Manchester United will also make a bid next month.
Zaha has starred for Palace in the Championship and also earned a first England cap last month. It has previously been reported that Wenger sees Zaha as a potential replacement for Theo Walcott, who has yet to agree a new contract.
With Palace pushing for promotion to the Premier League, it could well take a substantial offer to lure their star man away in January.
Wenger is also believed to be eager to boost his goalkeeping ranks, with the Daily Mail reporting that he is considering making a move for Sunderland’s Simon Mignolet.
The Belgian has been one of the Premier League’s most consistent performers between the sticks this season. It seems unlikely, then, that the 24-year-old will be available for the £5 million the Mail claims that Arsenal are prepared to offer.
While the Mail also suggests that Mignolet would act as a back-up, he would surely only move to the Emirates if given reasonable assurances of his ability to at least complete with Wojciech Szczesny for the No.1 spot.