Arsenal agree loan deal for Real Madrid striker Alvaro Morata - reports

Arsene Wenger is keen on bringing in another striker to support Olivier Giroud and a Spanish radio station is claiming the Gunners will once again tap into the Real reserves to boost their squad

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The Independent Football

Arsenal could look to strengthen their attack on a short-term basis after reports emerged claiming that a deal has been agreed with Real Madrid for a six-month loan of 21-year-old striker Alvaro Morata.

Real officials and coach staff have high hopes for Morata who the hope will lead the line in years to come, but he is currently providing back-up to Frenchman Karim Benzema after the 25-year0old made a return to form in his recent outings.

Despite being linked to Benzema in the past, Arsenal could look to take Morata until the end of the season to provide support for Olivier Giroud, and Spanish radio station Onda Cero has claimed that there is an agreement between the two clubs that allows Morata to leave the Santiago Bernabeu on a short-term basis.

North London rivals Tottenham were interested in taking the Spain Under-21 international on a permanent basis as part of the transfer of Gareth Bale, but Real were reluctant to let the highly-regarded forward leave the club and instead upped their bid to the eventual £86m selling price.

The Gunners also have good relations with the Spanish club, having negotiated a £42.5m move for Mesut Ozil on the final day of the summer transfer window, and they also have previous history with Real having swapped Jose Antonio Reyes for Julio Baptista on season-long loans back in 2006-07.

Morata has been restricted to 12 appearances for Real this season, but the majority of those have come from the bench and he has not started a match since the 2-0 victory over Malaga on October 19.

With both Cristiano Ronaldo and Gareth Bale in red-hot form, and Benzema returning to form with seven goals in his last nine appearances, Morata has had to compete with Angel Di Maria and youngster Jese, and a move to the Emirates would likely afford him more first-team action due to Arsene Wenger’s limited options in attack.

Behind Giroud, Wenger only has Nicklas Bendtner and Park Chu-Young to pick from, with neither having scored this season – Bendtner hasn’t netted for the Gunners isnce the 5-0 FA Cup win over Leyton Orient in March 2011 – and fans fear a Premier League title collapse should anything happen to the France international.

Bendtner, who has spent time on loan with Juventus and Sunderland in recent seasons, came close to leaving the Emirates in the summer before a deadline day move to Crystal Palace collapsed due to Wenger’s failure to secure a replacement, but he could still leave in January after proving a frustrated figure in his limited opportunities this season.