According to reports from Football London, Arsenal sporting director Edu has picked out £27m AS Roma midfielder Amadou Diawara as the alternative for the Gunners if they are unable to sign Atletico Madrid midfielder Thomas Partey, and his Lyon counterpart Houssem Aouar.
The 23-year-old Guinean is a defensive midfielder and he’s seen as the transfer alternative for both Partey and Aouar.
Gunners’ boss Arteta has made both Thomas Partey and Houssem Aouar his midfield targets in the current transfer window, but the club will need a lot of money to pull off just one of the two transfers.
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Atletico Madrid are adamant that Arsenal will have to pay the £45m release clause in Partey’s contract at the club.
The Spaniards are interested in signing an Arsenal player, Lucas Torreira, but they are only ready to offer a loan deal for the diminutive Uruguayan international.
Lyon skipper Aouar is a more attack-minded midfielder than Partey and he’s more expensive at £53m.
He was at the heart of Lyon’s midfield last season as they reached the Champions League semi-finals. Aouar scored nine goals plus 10 assists in 41 games last season for the French club.
Arsenal offered midfielder Matteo Guendouzi earlier in this window but the option of a swap deal was thrown out by Lyon.