Arsenal have entered the race for Chelsea and Manchester United target Moussa Dembele, according to reports
According to the Mirror, Moussa Dembele – who is valued at £40 million by his current club Celtic – stayed at the club as Brendan Rodgers turned down all approaches for him in the January transfer window.
However, they claim that Arsenal are now keen on buying the 20-year old Frenchman who made the move to Scotland for a fee of just £500,000 in the summer, joining Celtic from Championship side Fulham.
Dembele has shot to prominence this season after scoring 23 goals in just 33 appearances – 8 of which have come as a substitute. Dembele has been Celtic’s best player this season and has quickly established himself as one of the most exciting prospects in the world.
Chelsea reportedly attempted to buy the Frenchman on deadline day in the January transfer window, but were told there was no chance of signing him and that they would have to wait until the summer if they wanted to land the in-form striker.
With Diego Costa’s future beyond this season still uncertain, Chelsea are on the lookout for a new striker and will likely renew their interest in him this summer. The Blues have the funds to pay what Celtic ask and should have no problem meeting his reported £40 million valuation.
It was also reported that Dembele himself preferred a move to Manchester United or Paris-Saint Germain – the club where he started his career. United are looking to sign young players with great potential as Jose Mourinho looks to build a side that can dominate Europe for years to come.
With Wayne Rooney looking more and more likely to leave the club at the end of the season and Zlatan Ibrahimovic not a long-term solution up front, United need a striker that can fill the void and replace the departing Rooney in the long term, and Dembele might just be that man.
Despite handing Olivier Giroud a new contract, Arsenal have preferred to use Alexis Sanchez as their main striker and Giroud has been benched for their last two fixtures. With the Chilean’s future also up in the air, Arsene Wenger could be looking for a replacement up front.
While Dembele is nowhere near as complete a player as Alexis Sanchez, his displays are a testament to his brilliant potential and Arsene Wenger has a great reputation for developing players like the Frenchman.
Olivier Giroud is already 30 years of age and is not a viable long-term option. Dembele’s pace and finishing ability could be exactly what Arsenal need up front. He has also shown his strong mentality and has scored in several key fixtures for Celtic – particularly against Manchester City in the Champions League.
Should Arsenal pursue their interest in him they are definitely in for stiff competition. Chelsea and Manchester United can both easily out-muscle the Gunners in terms of finances and it might come down to Arsene Wenger assuring Dembele of an important role at the club should he choose to move to the Emirates.