Arsene Wenger looks to bring talented winger to the Emirates Stadium.
Skysports.com understands Arsenal have lodged an £18million bid for Aston Villa winger Stewart Downing.
Arsene Wenger has been surprisingly quiet in the transfer market so far this summer, with the Gunners yet to show their hand.
It is, however, widely acknowledged that they will require fresh faces if they are to challenge for the Premier League title this season.
They may even struggle to retain their top-four standing if they fail to add, with a number of their rivals having been busy bolstering their ranks.
England international Downing has been identified as one possible new recruit, and it is understood that a big-money offer was put to Villa on Friday.
The 26-year-old has hinted that he will be on his way out of Villa Park in the near future, with contract talks having been shelved.
SOURCE: Sky Sports
Arsene Wenger is keen to get spending this summer and seems close to completing a deal to sign Lille striker Gervinho and has now registered his interest in Aston Villa winger Stewart Downing who has also been the subject of a £15m bid from Liverpool last week.
Arsenal would appear to have a number of wide options and even though Samir Nasri appears likely to leave the North London club Wenger also has the likes of Andrei Arshavin, Theo Walcott and youngsters Jay Emmanuel-Thomas and Ryo Miyaichi who can also play out on the wing.
Stewart Downing has had two consistent seasons at under performing Aston Villa and it seems that the former Middlesbrough man wants to leave and would surely be interested in offers from both Anfield and the Emirates Stadium but new boss Alex McLeish is keen to prevent the 26 year old from leaving, not least because the Midlands club already lost Brad Friedel and Ashley Young to Tottenham and Man United respectively.
Arsenal are also said to be in talks to offload Nicklas Bendtner and Manuel Almunia in the coming days as neither player has joined the squad on their Asian tour.
The £18m offer for Downing would represent a club record transfer fee for Arsenal who’s highest previous fee was for Andrei Arshavin in 2009.