Aston Villa striker Ollie Watkins is on Arsenal radar but his age remains a sticking point

Arsenal are stepping up plans to sign a world-class forward during the summer transfer window after Bayern Munich dumped them out of the Champions League, according to the Sun.

Manager Mikel Arteta wants a versatile and modern forward capable of influencing games down the middle as well as from out wide, and Aston Villa striker Ollie Watkins is on their radar, but his age remains a sticking point.

The 28-year-old England international has bagged 26 goals and assisted another ten in 46 games across all competitions this season after ending last term with 16 goals and six assists in 40 games.

Arsenal also have Newcastle United striker Alexander Isak and his RB Leipzig counterpart Benjamin Sesko on their radar, while they have previously been interested in landing a traditional No.9, with Sporting Lisbon’s Viktor Gyokeres monitored.

The aforementioned trio are younger options, but Watkins has proven himself in the English top-flight and is capable of improving the Gunners despite being seen as a short-term solution if signed.

Having proven his quality in the Championship with Brentford, the Englishman has established himself as a key player for Villa since joining the Midlands club in the summer of 2020, with 59 Premier League goals to his name in 141 appearances.

Watkins was a thorn in the flesh of the Arsenal defence at Emirates Stadium last Sunday, capping his incredible performance against them with a well-taken goal in the 2-0 win for his side, and Arteta may have to convince the board to look beyond his age and go after him when the transfer window opens.

The Gunners clearly need more quality in attack given their performances in the last two games, and going for one of the best strikers in the land makes perfect sense even if his age is a concern for them.

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