Emirates Stadium side plot Anfield and Goodison Park raids.
Arsenal are set to step up their pursuit of Liverpool and Everton talents as Arsene Wenger looks to seal deals to bring in two of his top summer targets.
CaughtOffside understands that Wenger is set to make a £22m bid for Toffees midfielder Marouane Fellaini, an offer that will trigger the Belgian’s release clause which should set in motion a move to bring the 25 year old to the Emirates Stadium.
Fellaini is keen to leave Goodison Park and has given Arsenal encouragement that any offer from the North London club would be considered by the Everton star though Chelsea and Man United may also look to register their interest.
Fellaini is adept at getting forward, and netted a dozen goals in all competitions last term, but it’s in a more defensive midfield role that Wenger may be looking to use the powerful Everton man.
Arsenal lack bite in the centre of the park and Fellaini has himself talked up the possibility of becoming a more defensively minded player.
Wenger has not adequately replaced Alex Song, who left for Barcelona last summer, and Abou Diaby continues to suffer with injuries and poor form whilst Mikel Arteta, who was used primarily in a holding role in 2012/13, would benefit from the presence of a tough midfield partner, who could also offer protection to the likes of Jack Wilshere and Santi Cazorla.
Having worked within something of a restricted wage structure for the past decade Arsene Wenger has been told he can look to tempt new additions by offering in excess of the club’s current top earners and as such is ready to offer Fellaini as much as £125k a week.
Wenger is also set to make a move for Liverpool keeper Pepe Reina, who seems certain to leave Anfield following the arrival of Simon Mignolet from Sunderland.
The Spanish international is seen by Arsene Wenger as an ideal signing to become Arsenal’s first choice custodian following the Gunners boss’s loss of faith in young Pole Wojciech Szczesny who had a very average season last term.
Reina is thought to be open to a move to Arsenal and is reportedly keen to remain in the Premier League having settled in England, this despite growing speculation that the former Barcelona man may be seen as a long term replacement for Victor Valdes, who has publicly stated he is to leave the Nou Camp in a year’s time.
Pepe Reina will jump at the chance of a move to a side that can offer him Champions League football and a high profile move could even assist his push for a more prominent role in Vicente del Bosque’s Spanish national team set-up. The 30 year old has managed to collect just 28 caps since making his debut in 2005, seeing Iker Casillas take the lions share of attention, even during the period when he was left on the bench by Jose Mourinho in 2012/13.
Wenger is willing to offer up to £10m to land Reina, a bid that Liverpool may well accept as boss Brendan Rodgers needs to balance the books having already brought in four signings this summer and has plans to make further moves in the transfer window.
Arsenal are also set to offer Reina in excess of the £110k a week deal the experienced keeper is currently enjoying at Liverpool.
Reina has been a consistent Premier League performer and has racked up 394 appearances over the course of his eight seasons in Merseyside.