Rumour round-up: Exciting Arsenal January business

We may be between transfer windows here in the Premier League but the rumour mill doesn’t stop turning simply because of a few FA regulations.

Indeed, the tabloids are continuing to churn out reports on who the Premier League’s top clubs might look to sign in January and even for us here at Football FanCast, it’s all becoming a little hard to follow.

So with that in mind, we’ve decided to compress all the recent rumours into once place, broken down into easily digestible chunks for your convenience.

This article focuses on Arsenal, who were the only club in Europe’s five leading top flights not to sign an outfield player during the summer transfer window – their solitary signing coming in the form of ex-Chelsea No.1 Petr Cech.

Does this mean Arsene Wenger is going to splash the cash in the New Year instead? Are the Gunners finally on the verge of signing a world-class striker or defensive midfielder? Read through our ‘FIVE stars linked with January moves to Arsenal’ to find out!

JESE (LOAN)


A rumour that’s emerged over the last few days, in no small part due to Jese’s agent Giles Carvajal telling Real Madrid to use or lose the strike starlet, is the attacker heading to London.

The 22 year-old forward, capable of playing on either flank or as a front-man, made his debut for Los Blancos in 2011 and has since produced a decent return of 12 goals in 59 appearances.

But he’s been reduced almost exclusively to substitute outings since an ACL injury in March 2014 – so far this season he’s seen just 134 minutes of action in La Liga.

talkSPORT claim the news has put long-term admirers Arsenal and Chelsea on ‘red alert’,  whilst Spanish publication Sport, via The Metro, go one step further in suggesting a loan bid could be just around the corner.

ISCO


Another Real Madrid star believed to be on the Arsenal radar is midfield playmaker Isco.

The 23 year-old has registered 115 appearances across all competitions for Los Blancos, netting 17 times and helping them claim the 2014 Champions League title in the process, but now appears to be the odd one out in a five-man midfield composed of Toni Kroos, Luka Modric, James Rodriguez, Gareth Bale and Cristiano Ronaldo.

The Spain international’s long-term future in the Spanish capital has been open to speculation for some time, with Arsenal, Chelsea and Manchester City all allegedly interested in taking him off Rafa Benitez’s hands.

The latest reports, courtesy of the ever-undependable Fichajes, claim the Gunners are preparing a £22million bid for the January window. Real Madrid’s valuation of Isco, however, is likely to be significantly higher.

NOLITO


With the tabloids seemingly unconvinced Theo Walcott’s impressive strike-rate can be sustained for an entire season, Arsenal have been strongly linked with Celta Vigo forward Nolito in recent weeks.

The Spain international has always been highly-rated throughout his spells with Barcelona B, Benfica and Granada but really upped his game this season, bagging five goals and three assists in seven La Liga appearances.

That makes the 28 year-old La Liga’s top scorer and joint-second assistor, whilst his 3.4 created chances per match is also a division highest.

A highly technical and versatile winger-forward, Nolito seems like a good fit for the Emirates outfit. Furthermore, his €18million release clause certainly represents decent value for money.

Arsenal aren’t the attacker’s only admirers, however. He’s also been tipped to join Barcelona in January.

MICHY BATSHUAYI


Another goalscorer reportedly in the Gunners’ transfer thoughts is Marseille’s prodigious centre-forward Michy Batshuayi.

The 22 year-old has never really looked back since making his senior debut for Standard Liege in 2011, bagging 44 goals in 120 appearances for the Belgian outfit and 16 in 38 since moving to Stade Velodrome in summer 2014.

That includes an incredibly impressive haul of six goals and two assists in eight Ligue 1 starts this season, suggesting Batshuayi could well be the next world-class talent off the Belgian conveyor belt – following the likes of Eden Hazard, Vincent Kompany and Kevin De Bruyne.

The 5 foot 11 striker attracted plenty of Premier League interest during the summer and according to The Express, Arsenal and Spurs are set to scrap it out for his services in January.

SERGI SAMPER


Arsene Wenger is no stranger to adopting frustrated talents from Barcelona’s academy and the latest to allegedly come to his attention is midfielder Sergi Samper.

The 20 year-old is highly rated at the Nou Camp and made his senior debut at the start of last season, but has failed to claim a starring role over the likes of Andres Iniesta, Ivan Rakitic and Sergio Busquets.

Now facing the possibility of a season in the Spanish third tier with Barcelona B following their unexpected relegation last term, the prodigious playmaker allegedly hopes to jump ship to north London in the new year.

With a release clause of just £8.5million, he certainly seems worth the punt.