Arsenal transfer news latest: Lucas Torreira, Kieran Tierney, Hector Bellerin, Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, Laurent Koscielny and Yannick Carrasco

Unai Emery is prioritising defensive improvements this summer

Tom Kershaw@trlkershaw
Sunday 23 June 2019 12:55
Transfer deadline day January 2019: The five biggest moves

Arsenal’s summer pursuit of defensive reinforcements continues as the club prepare a second bid for Celtic full-back Kieran Tierney after an initial £15m offer was swatted away.

The Gunners are ‘optimistic’ of agreeing a fee, according to the BBC, with personal terms considered to be easily reached.

However, it’s in the centre of defence where Unai Emery appears keen to use the bulk of his limited transfer budget.

French World Cup-winning centre-backs Samuel Umtiti and Presnel Kimpembe have both been identified as potential targets, however, their valuation could prove a stumbling block.

Emery worked with Kimpembe at PSG and is keen to reunite with the 23-year-old, according to Le 10 Sport. However, the French champions are expected to demand a price in the region of £35m, which would virtually wipe out the entirety of Arsenal’s summer transfer budget.

Umtiti has long been eyed by the Gunners, but the 25-year-old’s price tag would outmatch that of Kimpembe’s meaning any move is unlikely, despite Barcelona being open to selling the defender.

Laurent Koscielny could make that position even harder to fill, with the veteran club captain yet to make a decision over his future, with just one-year remaining on his current contract.

Lyon have reportedly offered the 34-year-old a two-year deal, while Rennes and Bordeaux are both considering making approaches.

Lucas Torreira is another player who appears to be nearing the exit door, with Arsenal considering selling the defensive midfielder they signed only a year ago in order to increase their transfer budget.

Presnel Kimpembe and Samuel Umtiti are big-name targets for the Gunners

The Uruguayan quickly established himself as a crowd favourite at the Emirates, however, recently claimed he’s found little to love about life in London while on international duty.

AC Milan are preparing a £31m bid for the 23-year-old, according to Gazzetta Dello Sport, with newly appointed manager Marco Giampaolo keen to reunite with the player who starred under him at Sampdoria.

Torreira’s agent has stoked those rumours by claiming that Torreira would find the chance to work under his former coach as hard to resist.

Lucas Torreira could leave Arsenal after just one season in London

Arsenal are thought to be considering selling Torreira, but only if a club meets their £45m asking price. Napoli are also interested.

Hector Bellerin has also been linked with a possible departure with Atletico Madrid reportedly considering a move for the full-back, according to The Telegraph.

Bellerin signed a six-and-a-half year contract in November 2016 but Atletico hope including Vitolo, who starred under Unai Emery at Sevilla, could make any deal more tempting.

Koscielny is undecided over his future (AFP/Getty )

Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang has stoked rumours after reportedly liking an Instagram post in which Emery was mocked as a puppet. However, it’s extremely unlikely the Gunners would allow the Gabonese striker to depart.

The signing of 18-year-old centre-back William Saliba is expected to be completed from Saint-Etienne in the coming days. Arsenal have been wrangling over a fee for the highly touted defender, however, the blow to the Gunners’ budget may be softened by allowing Saliba to return to the Ligue 1 side on loan for a year.

Meanwhile, Torino’s Armando Izzo has emerged as another defensive target with the player’s agent reportedly arriving in London today, according to Tutto Mercato Web. The 27-year-old could provide a cut-price alternative and impressed after leaving Genoa last summer, winning his first Italian cap in the process.

Carrasco is keen to leave China this summer

The Gunners’ pursuit of Yannick Carrasco took another twist as the player was suspended by his club Dalian Yifang after returning late from international duty.

One of the Belgian’s teammates even went as far as to publicly urge him to leave, meaning any deal for the winger could now be easier to complete for the Gunner

Carl Jenkinson has emerged as a target for West Brom, while Eddie Nketiah is expected to be allowed to leave on loan next season to aid his development with Augsburg, Bristol City and Charlton among the clubs interest according to The Sun.

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