Arsenal transfer news: Victor Wanyama remains on Arsene Wenger's wish-list despite Mohamed Elneny signing

Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger wants to add one more midfielder before next season

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The Independent Football

Arsenal continue to be linked with a move for Southampton midfielder Victor Wanyama despite completing the signing of Egypt international Mohamed Elneny on Thursday, although any bid for the Kenya international is likely to be shelved until the summer.

With Elneny going straight into the squad for this weekend’s clash against Stoke, Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger is seeing his options in midfield increased after being forced to play both Aaron Ramsey and Mathieu Flamini in every Premier League match since Santi Cazorla and Francis Coquelin suffered serious injuries in November.

There was a second boost on Friday when it was revealed that Jack Wilshere, Danny Welbeck and Coquelin had all returned to training, although it’s believed that the trio are a long way off making a first-team comeback after being sidelined for the bulk of the season.

With Flamini, Mikel Arteta and Tomas Rosicky all out of contract at the end of the season, Wenger is likely to make at least one midfield signing, with the Mirror claiming that Wanyama’s Premier League experience puts him ahead of other transfer targets Lars Bender and William Carvalho in Wenger’s priority list.

Wanyama has been linked with a move to the Gunners since the summer and although a bid failed to materialise during the last transfer window, it was thought that Arsenal could launch a January move to try and alleviate their midfield problems. But the addition of Elneny will put the move on ice until the end of the season, and if Arsenal do any more transfer business this month it is not expected to be in midfield.

Wenger was positive about the additions of Swiss side Basel, and believes that his strengths and experience of playing in Europe will stand him in good stead to make an immediate impact on the Premier League.

“I believe he will be a good addition to the squad,” said Wenger. “He can be box to box and be a holding midfielder so that is for us very promising. We wanted a versatile player and I wanted a player who can play defensive but can as well play to box to box.

January Transfer window - completed deals

“His strengths are his technical level, his vision, his intelligence, his disciplined attitude and his physical attitude to compete at a high level. I think he has the physical qualities to play at the top level.

“Where he needs to adapt is to the challenges, the force needed in the Premier League to survive. I think that could demand a little bit of adaptation. But overall I think he has all the attributes to do well.”