Arsenal suffer £22.5m Barcelona transfer blow but target Lacazette replacement

Arsenal are reportedly looking to offload Alexandre Lacazette this summer with Moussa Dembele tipped as his potential replacement.

The Gunners are set for a major rebuild during the upcoming transfer window with as many as ten players set to leave the club.

One of those players could be Lacazette who has one year left on his deal at the Emirates.

And Lyon striker Dembele could fill the void left by the Frenchman, reports The Telegraph.

Dembele spent the second half of last season on loan at Atletico Madrid, but struggled to make an impact with Diego Simeone’s title-winning side.

The La Liga side have a £30million option to make the move permanent, but are unlikely to exercise it due to his struggles.

Arsenal are reportedly looking to sell Alexandre Lacazette

Should Arsenal sell Alexandre Lacazette this summer? Comment below

That would open the door for other suitors and Arsenal are one team that would be interested in signing Dembele.

And they reckon they can whittle that price down to £25m due to the former Celtic striker’s lack of playing time over the past 12 months.

Dembele scored 44 goals in his first two seasons in Lyon, including a brace in last year’s Champions League quarter-final against Manchester City, and notched 51 goals in 94 appearances for Celtic before that.

Arsenal are also keen on Hoops talisman Odsonne Edouard, but Leicester are favourites for his signature as Brendan Rodgers looks to reunite with the 23-year-old.

Meanwhile, the Gunners have also suffered a setback in their pursuit of full-back Emerson Royal, a potential replacement for Hector Bellerin.

Mikel Arteta was keen on the Real Betis rising star after an impressive season with Manuel Pellegrini’s side, but Barcelona have now signed the 22-year-old.

Arsenal are keen on a move for Moussa Dembele
Arsenal are keen on a move for Moussa Dembele

Emerson initially joined Barca from Brazilian side Atletico Mineiro in January 2019 in a three-way deal also involving Betis, which saw the full-back join the Andalusian club on loan.

And Barca exercised their option to bring Emerson back to the Nou Camp on Tuesday by buying the rest of his contract for around £8million, having already paid £10.8m as part of the initial deal, with Betis paying £5.4m.

There was a slim chance Emerson Royal would still be available even if he did seal his return to Ronald Koeman’s side, but it’s claimed they view him as a part of their long terms plans as they prepare to offer him a new contract until 2025.

Arteta admitted that there are likely to be wholesale changes at the club this summer.

Speaking on Tuesday, he said: “We have already had an incredible amount of changes at the club over the past year or so, more than ever. We are looking to improve and be much closer than where we are at the moment. In order to do that there are certain things that we have to improve.

“There are so many things to do because we already have a lot of players on loan and a lot of players with contracts still that we need to sort. It will depend on what happens with a lot of those players and what we are able to recruit to improve the team. That is going to determine where we are.”

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