Arsenal are planning a shock move for Paris Saint-Germain midfielder Georginio Wijnaldum in the coming days, a report from FourFourTwo claims.
The Gunners will be short of midfield options this month with Thomas Partey and Mohamed Elneny off to the African Cup of Nations with Ghana and Egypt.
This leaves Granit Xhaka, Albert Sambi Lokonga and Ainsley Maitland-Niles as the specialist senior central midfield options.
Maitland-Niles has already been touted to leave on loan to Roma while Lokonga is still fairly inexperienced despite a positive start to his Gunners career.
It is now reported that the Gunners are readying a loan bid for Wijnaldum, who is open to leaving Les Parisiens amid his limited playing time this season.
The Gunners could be without Partey and Elneny for the rest of the month with Ghana and Egypt among the favourites to win the African Cup of Nations title.
They are certain to miss at least five games during this period. Xhaka and Lokonga could line up together in each of those with the uncertainty over Maitland-Niles’ future.
Manager Mikel Arteta may want an experienced option to fill the void. Wijnaldum would be an excellent addition with his vast experience playing in England.
The £22.5 million-rated star spent a solitary season at Newcastle United before five years at Liverpool. The 31-year-old registered 27 goals and 16 assists from 217 appearances.
The Gunners have recently shifted their transfer policy with the purchase of young players, but there is still the need for a balance with a mixture of experience.
Wijnaldum could fit seamlessly alongside Xhaka in midfield and would provide Arteta with the chance to rotate in the coming months which he has been reluctant to do.
Xhaka and Partey have been almost ever-present figures when fit and available, but there is always the risk of an injury putting the club’s top-four pursuit in big jeopardy.
Stats from Transfermarkt.com
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