football

Arsenal target Darwin Nunez as Dusan Vlahovic alternative with reps 'not picking up phone'


Arsenal have reportedly joined the race for Benfica frontman Darwin Nunez after losing hope in the race for prolific Fiorentina striker Dusan Vlahovic. After a successful summer transfer window, the Gunners are continuing to keep their fingers on the pulse of the market as they seek to identify potential recruitment opportunities.

The club’s newly-devised transfer strategy – centred around signing young players – has seen them improve their fortunes on the field this season with Mikel Arteta now on course to mount a top-four challenge.

Yet further down the line, Arteta will be aware that there are several gaps in his squad that will need filling.

That’s because strikers Eddie Nketiah and Alexandre Lacazette are yet to sign new contracts with the club as they enter the final six months of their current deals.

And with captain Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang struggling to replicate the form he showed during his first few years in north London, Arteta and technical director Edu are considering adding more goals to their side.

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The report claims Benfica would not be willing to accept anything less than £36m for their frontman.

Arsenal were thought to be willing to break the bank for Fiorentina sensation Vlahovic before recent reports from Italy that suggest his camp do not want to pursue a move to the Emirates Stadium.

The Gunners are said to have already held background talks with Fiorentina over a future deal.

Vlahovic’s contract expires in the summer of 2023 but Fiorentina want to avoid losing him on a free transfer at all costs.

It means the Serbian could potentially be up for grabs as early as January – although La Viola are set to demand up to £70million.

Furthermore, Gianluca Di Marzio has been reporting that Vlahovic’s agent is not picking up the phone to Arsenal, which would seemingly rule him out of a move to north London.

It’s now 29 goals in 39 Serie A games in 2021 for Vlahovic, who has 12 in 15 league outings this term.

Tottenham and Manchester City have also been credited with interest in recent months while Atletico Madrid made a concrete offer for his services this summer but the approach was rejected by Fiorentina.





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