Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger has reportedly switched his focus to Portugal international and Sporting Lisbon star William Carvalho.
Arsenal striker nearing exit: Galatasaray ready to snap up German international.
Former Arsenal target told to leave: France Football deliver damning article.
Walcott signs new Arsenal deal: Striker commits future to club.
According to the Evening Standard, Carvalho has now become the primary target for the Gunners this summer as they look to address their long-time weakness in midfield.
The 23-year-old is currently on international duty at the Under-21 European Championships, and he impressed throughout the competition after playing an influential role in their run to the tournament’s final.
Carvalho’s ability to sit in front of his defence and control the tempo of a game while also acting as a defensive shield has ensured that he has received significant praise from around Europe.
Arsenal’s interest in Juventus midfielder Arturo Vidal has now ended, as reported by the Telegraph, and so Wenger has now looked to identify a player that can play a similarly important role for his side next season.
The Gunners have long been criticised for neglecting the role of combative midfielder that can also be considered an on-field leader for the team, but it finally appears as though the French tactician is set to answer the call.
Carvalho’s strength, balance and composure on the ball will likely ensure that he is capable of making a quick transition to the Premier League style of play and pace, although there are still areas of his game which need improving, particularly his consistency.
The Portuguese ace has played a pivotal role for Sporting in recent times, and there is an argument to suggest that he is now ready for the next step up in quality which could see him test himself in England.