Arsenal are still interested in signing Lyon midfielder Houssem Aouar, although they’ve reportedly identified a cheaper alternative to the Frenchman.
The current FA Cup holders tabled two bids for the France international in the summer, the second of which was the in the region of £35million.
Their approaches for the 22-year-old, however, fell well short of Lyon’s asking price, with the Ligue 1 side knocking back both offers.
Arsenal’s failed pursuit of Aouar paved the way for them to sign Ghana international Thomas Partey, whose services they acquired from Atletico Madrid for a fee of £45million.
It’s understood Gunners boss Mikel Arteta is still eager to add Aouar to his squad, with a winter bid reportedly in the works.
But according to Italian journalist Fabrizio Romano, the north Londoners are now weighing up the possibility of signing Red Bull Salzburg ace Dominik Szoboszla.
Arsenal are said to be “following” the 20-year-old, who has scored 22 goals and provided 31 assists in 71 appearances for the Austrian champions.
Tottenham Hotspur: 59
Manchester United: 7
Manchester City: 1
Szoboszlai is said to be “in love with the Premier League”, an infatuation that could work in Arsenal’s favour should they try to sign him.
The potential acquisition of Szoboszlai would give Arsenal some much-needed creativity in the middle of the park, which former Gunners midfielder Michael Thomas reckons is currently lacking from his old side.
“Through Arteta giving the team a more robust look, it has come at a cost to the creative side of our game,” Thomas told Caught Offside. “The players are playing very rigid.
“You need to be able to control the ball in areas that the opposing team doesn’t want to be and suffocate them. I think this will change in time but it needs to be sooner rather than later.
“Mesut Ozil obviously offers great creativity when he plays, but at what cost to the team’s efficiency?
“The team obviously needs more creativity going forward because they simply don’t have enough good efforts on goal. We are used to the frontline being played in behind, but recently everything seems to be in front of the opposition with no penetration or speed in the attacks.
“Another creative outlet is very needed whether it be Aouar or someone else.”