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Arsenal set for Man United battle over £35m star

Timothy Aiyeku

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North London outfit Arsenal are reported to be making moves to hijack the deal for Man United target Pau Torres in the January winter transfer window.

The winter transfer window might be some months away but efforts have already begun by the North London outfit and the Red Devils to improve their squad.

The battle for a Champions League spot is now more difficult than it was and the only way clubs can stand out is to improve their squad with every opportunity that presents itself.

Man United have a great need for a centre-back and will have to make that effort, especially as they conceded about nine goals in two defeats in the first three games of the Premier League.

Analysis has revealed that the Red Devils can only rely on Harry Maguire in the defence and must get a viable partner in the January transfer window.

Efforts to secure the signatures of Dayot Upamecano and Kalidou Koulibaly in the summer window failed.

However, Arsenal can boast of a number of centre-backs, including Gabriel Magalhaes who just joined the club but manager Mikel Arteta seems to be considering another addition with Pau Torres when the January window is opened.

It is claimed that Pau Torres is interested in the move which leaves the battle to Arsenal and Man United in convincing him on where he should be.

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Arsenal

EPL: Arteta given reasons to play William Saliba

Timothy Aiyeku

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William Saliba

French defender William Saliba is yet to get his competitive debut for Arsenal in the Premier League as he has also been omitted from the Europa League squad for the season.

Mikel Arteta insists that he is yet to be ready for the challenge, stressing that the young defender needs a year of transition, yet he is kept at the club without a loan move.

Now that Rob Holding has been declared injured and is joined by David Luiz on the treatment table, the Spanish boss is left with little options for the centre-back role and that makes it necessary to consider William Saliba for a role in the Premier League.

Shkodran Mustafi is also available for selection in the Premier League with his return from injury but the dream partnership of William Saliba and Gabriel Magalhaes will be a delight to the fans against Man United.

William Saliba’s former manager Claude Puel has blasted Mikel Arteta for not making use of the French defender, insisting that he is a talent and would have remained with the French Ligue 1 outfit Saint Etienne.

Mikel Arteta has now been told that William Saliba will be a top signing by his old team-mate in the French Ligue 1 outfit.

Saint Etienne defender Hoard Moukoudi says the youngster has enormous potential can he can fulfill at the Emirates Stadium with the qualities he has. He, therefore, stressed that William Saliba needs the chance.

“With the qualities he has, I’m sure he will take the chance when he gets it.

“He has enormous potential and will succeed, I am sure of that” he told French outlet Football Transfer.

The decision is left for manager Mikel Arteta to make on the readiness of the player but from all indications, William Saliba is relaxed and ready to wait for his chance.

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Arsenal

Arsenal would have signed this 25-year-old in the summer but were rejected

Timothy Aiyeku

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Reports by Calcio Mercato have revealed that the North London outfit made an attempt to sign Andrea Petagna from Italian Serie A outfit Napoli in the summer transfer window but their offer was turned down.

This would have been a surprise to the Gunners fans as the speculations and reports of Arsenal move for the 25-year-old striker was not in the news.

Andrea Petagna signed for the Italian Serie A outfit in the last January transfer window and was allowed to remain on loan at SPAL for the rest of the season. HE returned to the club in the last summer transfer window and the North London outfit made a failed shot at him.

The report claims that the Gunners manager was attracted to Andrea Petagna because of his form for SPAL and identified him as the type of striker that will strive in his team.

The coming of Gennaro Gattuso as the new manager in charge of Naples was the reason Andrea Petagna did not join Arsenal as he insisted on working with the attacker.

This news did not come as a surprise as Mikel Aretta did not loan out Eddie Nketiah or sold French striker Alexandre Lacazette as speculated in the last summer transfer window. It would have been a different situation at the moment if he succeeded.

Meanwhile, the speculations linking Alexandre Lacazette away from the North London outfit are yet to end with claims that he might be having his last season at the club.

The former Lyon forward is yet to pay the faith invested in him by the Spanish boss with the Gunners struggling o score goals in the last games.

The loss of goalscoring form by Gabon striker Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang has further exposed the French forward and his inability to be consistent with his duty at the club.

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Arsenal

New Arsenal team is expected in predicted XI vs Dundalk

Timothy Aiyeku

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Alexandre Lacazette

The English Premier League outfit will resume actions against Dundalk at the Emirates Stadium on Thursday for the Europa League clash and the target for Mikel Arteta is to get back to winning ways after suffering a defeat against Leicester City in the Premier League clash at the weekend.

Arsenal enjoyed a sweet 2-1 victory in their first Europa League game against Molde with goals coming from Nicolas Pepe and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang which makes it important to continue on that note.

A number of players are have been confirmed by manager Mikel Arteta to be away as a result of injuries but that will not stop the Spanish boss from resting some of the big boys for the Premier League challenge against Man United at the weekend.

The likes of Thomas Partey, Granit Xhaka, Bernd Leno could be rested for the game or handed bench roles to get them fresh for the weekend challenge. Special thanks to the fact that they will not have to travel away from England.

However, Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang could get his own share of playing time in the game to be able to help his search for goal-scoring form but that could also happen with a bench role as he has been criticized for not scoring goals.

Runar Alex Runarsson’s wait for a debut could be over as an opportunity is to be handed to him on Thursday night while Shkodran Mustafi will be in line for action after the Injury of David Luiz and the absence of William Saliba from the Europa League team.

The likes of Mohamed Elneny, Maitland-Niles, Sead Kolasinac, Eddie Nketiah, and Joe Willock are available for selection for the Thursday encounter.

See predicted Arsenal XI
Runar Alex Runarsson, Maitland-Niles, Cedric Soares, Shkodran Musrafi, Sead Kolasinac, Joe Willock, Mohamed Elneny, Dani Ceballos, Willian, Eddie Nketiah, Nicolas Pepe.

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