Arsenal to swoop for Hummels and Gundogan, Bielik deal near
Gunners linked to Borussia Dortmund pair, plus Reid, Dybala and Brozovic. Man Utd warned off Strootman
Arsenal, Manchester United and Liverpool are all in the hunt for new talent this month, but today's rumours suggest that they will not have it all their own way as they try to lure their targets away from other clubs:
• Has Arsene Wenger found the silver bullet that will solve all Arsenal's problems in one fell swoop? The Daily Star thinks he might have, with a move for both defender Mats Hummels and defensive midfielder Ilkay Gundogan of Borussia Dortmund. The pair, as individuals, have been on Wenger's radar for some time and now the Star believes he is ready to act. Hummels would cost at least £35m says the paper while Gundogan would be an additional £20m. The Daily Telegraph has other ideas and says that the pair would cost £63m, and notes that there would be competition for Hummels from Real Madrid and Man United.
• If Arsenal are serious about landing Palermo hit man Paulo Dybala they'll have to fork out £31m. That's the warning from Palermo chairman Maurizio Zamparini according to the London Evening Standard, which says the Sicilian outfit hopes the valuation will ward off interest from Arsenal. Metro reports that Manchester United have already made a pitch for Dybala but the Serie A side "snubbed" the Red Devils because the offer was so small. Metro says United had "hoped to pinch him ahead" of the Gunners but it's unknown if they will up their offer.
• There is bad news for Arsenal fans with the news that both Mikel Arteta and Mathieu Debuchy will be out for three months. But Sky Sports reports that Arsenal have confessed that there is no recall option in the Carl Jenkinson loan deal, which means that despite yet another defensive crisis at the Emirates, Jenkinson will stay at West Ham. However, Jenkinson's current team mate, Winston Reid, could be on his way to the Emirates according to the Daily Telegraph. Although it adds that Spurs are also interested. Just to add spice to the rumour mill Wenger has admitted that the Gunners are "in the market" for a defender.
• With Yaya Sanogo off to Palace, there is space at Arsenal for a raw recruit that the fans know little or nothing about. Enter Krystian Bielik, the 17-year-old Legia Warsaw midfielder who looks set to finally secure a move to the Emirates. Sky Sports reports that the Polish teenager will have a medical at the Emirates on Friday ahead of a deal worth around £2m. Presumably compatriot Wojciecj Szczesny will hope he picks up 200 cigarettes on the way over.
• The Daily Star says that Roma have "played down talk" that the club are poised to offload Kevin Strootman and Miralem Pjanic this month. Manchester United have long been linked with a £32m move for Dutch midfielder Strootman while the Star claims that Liverpool are "interested in a £23m deal" for 24-year-old Bosnian playmaker Pjanic. The bad news for both Premier League clubs is that Roma president James Pallotta has no intention of selling: "Kevin's come out and addressed it, saying he likes it in Italy and he has a five-year contract. And, by the way, I wasn't going to sell him anyway," said Pallotta. "The Liverpool thing with Pjanic is the same. We have another four years with him, and we love him."
• The Daily Telegraph takes a more cynical line over Strootman and believes United are in with a shout of signing the player, if the price is right. It says they would have to pay as much as £77m to land the Dutchman. "Pallotta indicated that Roma would listen to a United offer," explains the paper. It quotes him as saying: "We're businessmen. If someone comes in with a stupid number for a player, you have to listen to it. You can't just say 'no, no matter what'."
• Arsenal could get their hands on Marcelo Brozovic this month with the Daily Mail claiming that the Dinamo Zagreb midfielder is "close to agreeing terms with Arsenal". The paper says the Gunners have been in talks with the Croatian outfit since October but their latest offer of £6m seems to have swayed Dinamo and a deal will be wrapped up in the coming fortnight. Capped six times by Croatia, Brozovic has been on Arsene Wenger's hitlist for months and he is seen as similar in style to Patrick Vieira.
• Meanwhile Talksport claims an unremarkable exclusive with the news that Swansea will fight tooth and nail to retain the services of striker Bafetimbi Gomis. Having just sold Wilfried Bony to Manchester City it is understandable that they don't want to lose his understudy, but Arsenal and Newcastle are both reported to be circling. Swans coach Alan Curtis told Talksport that Gomis will now lead their attack and consequently "the club will resist all offers they receive [for him]".
• Jermain Defoe has passed a medical at Sunderland as he looks to seal his move from MLS side Toronto, confirms Sky Sports. The broadcaster claims as many as ten Premier League clubs were after the former Tottenham and England striker, but the Black Cats are expected to announce the signing before the end of the week. Sky reports that the "Defoe deal is a straight swap for Jozy Altidore", the American frontman who arrived at Sunderland 18 months ago but has scored just once in that time.