Arsenal have moved ahead of Chelsea and Manchester United in the race to sign Atletico Madrid star Joao Felix in January, Spanish outlet Marca claim (today’s edition, page 23).
The Gunners are likely to reinforce their attack during the winter transfer window and a new striker could be prioritised following the knee surgery for Gabriel Jesus.
Felix has been linked with a move to the club in recent days and Marca report that they are now in the lead to sign him ahead of Premier League rivals Chelsea and United.
However, the Portuguese will cost a premium fee with Atletico said to demand £86 million (€100m).
Arsenal should consider Felix loan
The Gunners are currently prioritising the transfer of Shakhtar Donetsk winger Mykhaylo Mudryk. The Ukrainian is said to be determined to join the club next month.
With a huge outlay required to sign him, the north London giants may not spend big on a marquee striker and the onus could be on securing a loan deal with an option to buy.
Hence, it is unlikely that the Gunners will break the bank for Felix this winter. Instead, they could try to convince Atletico with a sizeable loan fee with a purchase clause.
Felix has shown glimpses of his potential every now and then, but has not performed at a high level over long periods. He has probably been hampered by Atletico’s playing style.
The counter-attacking style under manager Diego Simeone has not worked out for him and he could prosper with the Gunners, who play on the front foot under Mikel Arteta these days.
Buying him outright would be a massive gamble. Signing him on loan would allow the manager to assess whether he can be part of the long-term plans of the north London club.