Arsenal’s Houssem Aouar hopes fade as Mikel Arteta targets Chelsea star Jorginho as alternative

Arsenal's hopes of signing Houssem Aouar are fading
Arsenal’s hopes of signing Houssem Aouar are fading (Picture: Canal+)

Arsenal’s hopes of landing Mikel Arteta’s No.1 transfer target Houssem Aouar are said to be fading with the Gunners manager reluctantly set to focus signing Chelsea midfielder Jorginho instead.

Arteta has presided over a major improvement in Arsenal’s results since replacing Unai Emery last December and enjoyed a third victory over Premier League champions Liverpool in the space of two months following last night’s Carabao Cup victory at Anfield.

The north London club are now a far more resolute and well drilled unit under their former captain, but that has come at the detriment of their attacking play. Dani Ceballos has returned from Real Madrid for a second loan spell, but with Mesut Ozil frozen out Arteta’s options are limited in that area of the pitch.

Aouar, who impressed during Lyon’s unlikely run to the Champions League semi-finals last season, could yet leave the Ligue 1 club this summer, but the Gunners are struggling to raise the necessary finances to fund a deal.

Lyon president Jean-Michel Aulas warned last week that the Gunners were some way short of proposing an attractive offer and their failure to conclude a deal swiftly has reportedly opened the door for Paris Saint-Germain who are now said to be in talks and at the head of the queue for the France international.

Arsenal remain interested in signing Chelsea midfielder Jorginho
Arsenal remain interested in signing Chelsea midfielder Jorginho (Picture: Getty)

Arteta’s midfield options are set to be further limited with the impending departure of Lucas Torreira to Atletico Madrid set to be confirmed and the former Manchester City assistant will now turn his focus to signing Chelsea’s Jorginho, accorrind to ESPN’s Julien Laurens.

The Italy international has endured something of a roller-coaster career at Stamford Bridge but appeared to have carved out a key role for himself under Frank Lampard after initially he found it difficult to acclimatise to the Premier League under his former Napoli boss Maurizio Sarri.

Lampard has embarked on a major summer spending spree and is still keen to add West Ham’s Declan Rice to the mix but may need to sell before he can buy again.

Ruben Loftus-Cheek and Antonio Rudiger are said to have been deemed surplus to requirements but if takers cannot be found for those two, he could sanction the departure of Jorginho to raise additional funds.

Jorginho had been on the verge of Manchester City in the summer of 2018 when Arteta was still Pep Guardiola’s assistant but performed a dramatic late U-turn to team up with Sarri at Stamford Bridge.

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