Transfer news: Arsenal eye Karim Benzema, Javier Hernandez, Edin Dzeko and Salomon Kalou to ease the pressure on Olivier Giroud - reports

Gunners reportedly looking to ease the burden on their lone striker in January

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The Independent Football

Karim Benzema, Edin Dzeko, Javier Hernandez and Salomon Kalou are reportedly January transfer targets for Arsenal as the club look to lower the demands of their lone front man Olivier Giroud.

Giroud, who is expected to play for France against Ukraine in the World Cup qualifier on Friday night alongside Bacary Sagna and Laurent Koscielny, has started every Premier League and Champions League match for the Gunners this season (17 in total), scoring eight goals. Arsene Wenger is now looking to ease the burden on Giroud, and the only other target man in the squad is Nicklas Bendtner.

Koscielny had admitted that his international and club team-mate is in need of a rest. A knee problem has concerned the Frenchman all season, and he not scored in his last four matches for Arsenal.

“He's also playing game after game and hasn't had a rest, so maybe he's feeling a bit of fatigue,” Koscielny said this week.

Edin Dzeko has been out of the Manchester City first team this season

Manchester United's Javier Hernandez has also been marginalised

Salomon Kalou is reportedly keen to return to England


"He's very important for us - strong and always answers the call on the pitch. If you look at the games, he weighs enormously on the opposition's defence. All the balls he wins are in the air with his back to goal. He works very hard up front."

Benzema is entering the final 18 months of his contract, and, despite playing regularly this season, a bid of around £25-£30m would tempt Real Madrid. High offers could also be considered for Manchester City’s Dzeko and Manchester United's Hernandez, with both players struggling for starts this season at their respective clubs.

The former Chelsea forward Salomon Kalou, now at Lille, is a player that Wenger has previously coveted, and the 28-year-old is understood to be keen on a move back to the Premier League.

Olivier Giroud has failed to score in his last four matches for Arsenal