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Arsenal and Newcastle face fresh competition for transfer target

A host of Premier League sides may see their hopes of signing Stade Malherbe Caen midfielder Ngolo Kante frustrated with news that Olympique de Marseille are keen on the player.

OM coach Marcelo Bielsa is considering several options as he looks to replace Giannelli Imbula in the heart of the midfield. The France U21 youth star had been tipped for a move to the Premier League, with both Chelsea and Arsenal linked with the tenacious star [Express].

However, Imbula ultimately moved on to FC Porto, securing a move to the Portuguese giants at the beginning of July [UEFA.com].

Beyond Imbula, Bielsa also needs to replace the likes of Dimitri Payet, Andre Ayew and Andre-Pierre Gignac this summer, with the three having moved to West Ham United, Swansea City and Tigres respectively.

The 22-year-old will not be easy to replace, having shown himself to be an influential presence both offensively and defensively last season.

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One player being considered by Bielsa is Caen midfielder Ngolo Kante.

Le 10 Sport report that while the Argentine coach is considering several options from South America, 24-year-old Kante is in pole position to replace Imbula.

However, Bielsa may need to quickly to secure his man; Arsenal, Newcastle United and Southampton have all been linked with a move for the Paris-born powerhouse [Daily Mail], while the Express reported earlier in the month that Leicester City were also closing in on the former Boulogne man [Express].

Kante contributed five assists and two goals in 37 league outings for the Normandy outfit last season.