Having almost stolen the Premier League title from Manchester City, Arsenal are ready to go back to the Etihad in a bid to poach another of their players this summer, and are eyeing up an astonishing move for club captain Ilkay Gundogan.
Mikel Arteta, formely Pep Guardiola’s assistant coach at Manchester City, has already raided his former club twice when he bought Oleksandr Zinchenko and Gabriel Jesus to the Emirates from the Etihad last summer.
They have been linked with further moves, with the likes of Joao Cancelo reportedly on Arsenal’s radar as they look to build a squad able to compete with the Cityzens, by buying their deadwood.
Now, it is the turn of Gundogan, who is out of contract this summer as things stand and has attracted attention from Barcelona and north London, though Manchester City would like him to stay.
It seemed as though they had got their wish, with reports claiming that a two-year deal was on the verge of being agreed for the German, who has scored four goals and provided two assists in his last five outings.
However, that has since been debunked, and according to the reliable David Ornstein, Arsenal are doing their best to persuade the German midfielder to switch his allegiances and move to north London for the upcoming campaign.
There is expected to be a vacancy in the centre of the pitch at the Emirates, with Granit Xhaka strongly linked with a move to Bayer Leverkusen at the end of the season, and the Gunners are keen to add experience as well as quality as they look to go one better than their second-placed finish this season.
A key man for the regular Premier League champions and part of a side on the verge of completing a historic treble, however, it isn’t obvious why Gundogan would want to trade that in for Arsenal.