Arsenal Keen On Signing Newcastle Enforcer Cheick Tiote

Wenger eyeing Ivorian.

Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger will make an ambitious bid this week to sign midfielder Cheick Tiote.

But the Gunners boss faces a huge battle to convince ­Newcastle United to sell. And Wenger will also make a move for a utility defender before the transfer ­window shuts at 11pm on Friday, with Montpellier’s Mapou ­Yanga-Mbiwa high on his list.

Tiote is now Wenger’s top ­midfield target, ahead of Rennes star Yann M’Vila, even though Arsenal know Newcastle are ­desperate to keep the Ivory Coast international. Chelsea and Manchester City have previously been quoted over £20million for Tiote and remain ­interested, but Wenger will test the water with a bid of around £15m.

Tiote earns £40,000-a-week and Wenger would offer the 26-year-old a healthy pay rise.

It is understood Tiote is aware of Arsenal’s ­interest and believes the London club will make a firm offer for him once today’s game against Stoke is out of the way.

SOURCE: Daily Mirror

The Gunners have been linked with a defensive midfielder for most of the summer and, after the £15m sale of Alex Song to Barcelona, their need is now greater than ever.

Boss Arsene Wenger doesn’t appear to be convinced by Rennes enforcer Yann M’Vila, mainly on account of his poor off-field disciplinary record, making a move for Newcastle’s Titote all the more likely.

The Ivorian midfielder has been an integral part of Alan Pardew’s revolution at St James’ Park and has made himself a fan’s favourite with a series of all-action displays in the deep-lying midfield role.

The Toon have brought in Dutchman Vernon Anita and there is speculation in some quarters than the ex-Ajax youngster is a replacement for Tiote. Indeed, Anita played the defensive midfield role for Newcastle in Saturday’s defeat to Chelsea – albeit with limited success, as he gave away the penalty that led to the Blues’ opener.

Titote is, of course, best remembered for his late equaliser against Arsenal in the legendary 4-4 draw at St James’ Park and he would doubtless be a success in an Arsenal team that has lacked steel for some time.

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