Mikel Arteta plans to rebuild Arsenal squad BEFORE Euro 2020 by signing two midfielders and a central defender as Barcelona eye move for striker Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang
- Mikel Arteta wants to get Arsenal’s summer business done before Euro 2020
- Arsenal moved in January to bring in defender Pablo Mari and Cedric Soares
- Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang could leave Arsenal with Barcelona interested
The Gunners had a relatively quiet January window, signing defenders Pablo Mari and Cedric Soares — with a view to strengthening the squad more significantly in the summer.
Mikel Arteta’s side are prioritising a box-to-box midfielder, a central defender and a creative central midfielder.
Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta wants to move quickly when rebuilding his squad in the summer
Cedric Soares was one of two players to sign for Arsenal in a relatively quiet transfer window
Feyenoord teenager Orkun Kokcu — the Dutch-born Turkey Under 21 midfielder — is among the players they are monitoring.
And work has already started behind the scenes on trying to strike early deals for their targets.
Clubs often inflate prices for players who perform well at international tournaments and Arsenal do not want to see their moves for the players jeopardised because of this.
Feyenoord teenager Orkun Kokcu is one of the players Arteta is said to be keeping tabs on
The future of Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang will also come into question this summer, as he enters the final 12 months of his deal at the Emirates Stadium.
The Arsenal captain was linked with Barcelona last month — and Eric Abidal, sporting director of the Catalan club, said: ‘I know Aubameyang.
‘He is important and, in his team, he is decisive. It is logical that, in the summer, a “nine” will come. We know that Luis Suarez will come back strong (from a knee injury), but you have to bring a top player in the summer.
‘There is a list with players like Olivier Giroud, Fernando Llorente or Aubameyang but we decided not to sign someone in January.’
Barcelona could make a move for Arsenal forward Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang in the summer