Arsene Wenger wants to sign two of Mesut Ozil’s international team-mates.
Arsenal are plotting to move for Germany stars Lars Bender and Ilkay Gundogan in January, the Metro understand.
The Gunners broke their transfer record to sign Mesut Ozil from Real Madrid for £42.5 million on transfer deadline day, and manager Arsene Wenger has identified two of the 24-year-old’s international colleagues he wants to add to the growing German contingent at the Emirates Stadium.
It’s well known that Wenger has prioritised the strengthening of his midfield and is reportedly targeting Bayer Leverkusen’s Bender and Borussia Dortmund’s Gundogan having requested his scouting team to provide detailed reports on the pair.
Bender was a name that featured prominently on Wenger’s radar during the summer, seeing an £18.5m bid rejected by Leverkusen for the hard-working midfielder, while Dortmund boss Jurgen Klopp unequivocally signalled that Gundogan was not for sale.
Despite the Ozil deal taking a significant chunk out of his budget it’s believed the Arsenal board are willing to support the Frenchman again when the transfer window reopens and boost the club’s chances of ending a well-documented eight-year trophy drought.
That backing could lead Wenger abandoning a move for the pair until next summer and concentrating his efforts on persuading Liverpool to part with Luis Suarez in January, with the Uruguayan striker still a prime target.