Arsenal now leading the race to sign new £85m “machine” for Mikel Arteta - report


Arsenal are leading the race to sign an in-demand striker who is at the top of his game next summer, according to a fresh report.

Mikel Arteta's current options
The Gunners have Gabriel Jesus and Eddie Nketiah as their two natural options at centre-forward as it stands, but Football Transfers have reported that they are open to offers for the latter of the two in order to raise funds to buy a more high-profile talisman.

The Emirates Stadium side have internally discussed moves for Juventus’ Dusan Vlahovic, Brentford’s Ivan Toney and RB Leipzig's Benjamin Sesko, but should deals for any of those fail to come to fruition, a big-money alternative has seemingly emerged.

Napoli’s Victor Osimhen has firmly established himself as Walter Mazzarri’s best-performing offensive player so far this season (WhoScored - Napoli statistics), and the 24-year-old’s impressive form has caught the eye of Edu and Mikel Arteta.

The Nigeria international still has just under two years remaining on his deal (Napoli contracts), but with the player currently refusing to extend his stay, his admirer in the Premier League has been alerted that there could be a potential deal up for grabs.

According to Italian outlet CalcioNapoli24 (via Sport Witness), Arsenal are leading the race for Osimhen ahead of 2024. The Gunners have "muscled to the front of the queue" to sign the striker at the end of the term, taking over the likes of Chelsea and Real Madrid who are also hoping to secure his services.

The Napoli's star agent, Roberto Calenda, has been reluctant to publicly speak about his client's situation after holding a meeting regarding a contract renewal, but even if he was to put pen to paper, he could still be available, just for a much higher fee in the region of €100m (£85m).

During his time at Napoli, Osimhen has racked up a remarkable 81 involvements, 65 goals and 16 assists, in 114 appearances, showing just how prolific he can be in the final third, and he remains a constant threat in the attacking areas of the pitch (Transfermarkt - Osimhen statistics).

The Lagos native currently ranks in the 98th percentile for shots, representing his desire to try and test the opposition’s goalkeeper and hit the back of the net, regardless of whether the end product comes to fruition or not (FBRef - Osimhen statistics).

Arsenal’s target has even been previously recognised for his efforts on an individual level having secured four top goalscorer awards, alongside being named Italy’s Player of the Season, which clearly displays how much of a positive impact he brings to a side.

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