The Gunners’ only January signings came in the form of loans for Pablo Mari and the injured Cedric Soares, but new manager Mikel Arteta is expected to put more of a stamp on the club ahead of next season as he looks to transform an underachieving squad.
Despite also having William Saliba on the books following his capture from Saint-Etienne last summer, defensive reinforcements are set to remain high on the list of priorities.
According to The Sun, Arsenal are ‘monitoring’ Lille centre-back Gabriel, having already made an enquiry about the 22-year-old Brazilian when technical director Edu made contact with his club during the recently closed January transfer window.
Lille’s early valuation for Gabriel is said to be close to £30m and is apparently based on the £27m Arsenal paid for the teenage Saliba last year.
The emerging star has played most of Lille’s Ligue 1 games this season as the club pushes for a Champions League place. The bad news for Arsenal is that he has only just signed a contract extension this week that will ensure the French club can demand a premium fee.
On the Arsenal radar further up the pitch is Turkey Under-21 midfielder Kokcu, who is Dutch-born and has been with Feyenoord since the age of 14.
The Daily Mirror writes that the Gunners have continued to watch 19-year-old Kokcu for the past few months and he is on the radar as the club plans its summer recruitment.
There is expected to be competition for the player’s signature from un-named clubs in Spain, but it is said that Feyenoord will allow him to leave for a suitable in excess of £15m.
Like Gabriel, Kokcu has also been playing regularly this season and is under contract until 2023.
Source : 90min