Unai Emery is hoping to kickstart Arsenal‘s charge for the title next year – and he needs a few new faces to do so.
Emery is starting his summer shopping spree with one arm tied behind his back, however, after his side failed to qualify for the Champions League next season.
It means Arsenal have a starting budget of around £45million and are hoping to do a couple of deals on the cheap.
Unai Emery has to rebuild his Arsenal squad on a threadbare budget this summer
After failing to qualify for the Champions League, Emery now has around £40m to spend
Without the funds to launch a Manchester City-style splurge, Emery will have to trust the Gunners’ top brass to thrash out some money-savvy deals.
Gabriel Martinelli, 18, was the first player through the door this window after signing earlier this week from Ituano for £6m – meaning Arsenal now have the best part of just £40m to play with.
Should they be able to steal a few bargains in the market, Emery would ideally like to acquire a winger, a centre half and a full back – as well as potentially a back-up goalkeeper and another midfielder.
They have been priced out of deals for players such as Manchester United’s Eric Bailly and Barcelona centre back Samuel Umtiti but are hopeful Crystal Palace will lower their £80m asking price for Wilfried Zaha.
Here, Sportsmail looks at Arsenal’s summer targets and how each could potentially pan out.
Gabriel Martinelli signed for £6m this week, but who else will follow him through the door?
Wilfred Zaha (Crystal Palace) – £80m
The Gunners have opened talks with Crystal Palace about a swoop for their No 1 target but Sportsmail understands an official bid is yet to be tabled.
Arsenal have made it clear they value Zaha at around £40million – half of Palace’s valuation.
It appears both clubs are a distance away from agreeing a deal for Zaha, despite the player urging Palace to allow him to leave for Arsenal, the club he supported as a child.
Should Emery pull this one off, it will max out their budget and allow little wiggle room to further bolster the ranks.
Wilfried Zaha is desperate for a move to Arsenal, but Palace have valued him at a hefty £80m
Yacine Brahimi (Porto) – Free
The Gunners are reportedly in talks with Porto over a deal to bring the 29-year-old winger to the Emirates.
Brahimi represents a brilliant deal for Arsenal, with the player’s contract in Portugal having just expired it means he could move on a free transfer.
While he might not be the big-ticket signing some supporters would want, especially given the dangling carrot of Zaha, he would come having enjoyed his best season in front of goal last year.
It is understood the clubs are in talks, however the two parties are some way off agreeing personal terms.
Porto winger Yacine Brahimi could sign for free, but they need to agree on personal terms
Ryan Fraser (Bournemouth) – £30m
Fraser was one of the most consistent performers for Bournemouth last season and, as such, has attracted interest from Arsenal.
Bournemouth have slapped a £30m price tag on the Scotland international, which again would represent a huge chunk of Arsenal’s summer budget.
The deal has proven difficult to secure, with Bournemouth determined to keep Fraser and the Scotland international yet to push for a move. In fact he told The Mirror he will likely be at the south coast club next term.
Although interest has been protracted, it appears this deal is slipping away from Emery’s grasp.
Ryan Fraser will command a £30m fee and has suggested he won’t leave Bournemouth
Kieran Tierney (Celtic) – £25m
The Celtic left back has been the subject of a £15m bid in recent days with Arsenal keen to land the player’s signature.
Arsenal are expected to return with a second bid of £19m, hoping to barter the Scottish side down from their £25m valuation as the Gunners look to save every possible pound.
However, Sportsmail understands Napoli are threatening to gazump the Gunners in the race for the 22-year-old, meaning Emery will have to act fast if he is to wave his second summer signing through the door.
Arsenal hope to sign Kieran Tierney for £19m, but Celtic will likely hold out for a sum of £25m
William Saliba (Saint Etienne) – £27m
The highly-rated central defender has enjoyed a breakthrough campaign in Ligue 1, becoming an established part of Jean-Louis Gasset’s much-improved Saint-Etienne.
Spurs are also chasing the 18-year-old, according to reports, and are primed to open negotiations with the player.
L’Equipe claim that Emery’s side remain the 18-year-old’s preferred destination this summer after agreeing a provisional contract with the club last week.
William Saliba, 18, is a highly-rated defender and Tottenham are also vying for his signature
Eray Comert (Basle) – £7m
Arsenal are stepping up their interest in Basle defender Comert with talks planned with his agents in Switzerland.
Comert is keen on a move to London and the 21-year-old could be prised away from Basle for less than £7million.
Comert is with his team-mates at Basle’s pre-season training camp in Munich having spent five days in London this summer working on his personal fitness with former Great Britain Olympic sprinter Dwain Chambers.
Arsenal are expected to send representatives to Basle for talks on Saturday.
Arsenal are stepping up their interest in Basle defender Eray Comert, who could cost just £7m
Lukas Klostermann (RB Leipzig) – £18m
Klostermann starred for Germany in the European Under-21 Championship this summer and is now on the radar of a number of clubs.
Spanish publication Diario AS report that Atletico and Arsenal both want to add the 23-year-old to their squads ahead of the new season.
Klostermann has already made two appearances for Germany at senior level, which has impressed Arsenal.
Lukas Klostermann starred for Germany in the European Under-21 Championship
Nabil Fekir (Lyon) – £25m
Fekir looked set to be heading to the Premier League on the eve of last summer’s World Cup before a £53m switch to Liverpool collapsed late on over medical concerns.
According to L’Equipe, the Gunners are still deciding whether to make a move for the World Cup-winning Frenchman with any potential move hinging on whether they can offload Mesut Ozil.
Fekir would be a player with international pedigree and who comes following a few seasons of sustained good form. Although £25m is a sizeable hit to Emery’s budget, the Gunners might go for broke if the player decides he wants to move to north London.
One thing in Arsenal’s favour is that Lyon have confirmed that they have left the ‘door ajar’ for his exit – meaning they would be willing to negotiate.
Nabil Fekir would come with international pedigree and a few seasons of sustained success
Walter Kannemann (Gremio) – £10m
The tough-tackling 28-year old has been the subject of enquiries from Arsenal and Atletico Madrid earlier this year.
Gremio would sell the combative Argentina international, nicknamed The Viking, for £10.2million and he is keen to move to Europe.
Kannemann is lower down on Emery’s shopping list, but for such a relatively meagre figure it could prove an attractive prospect for the Gunners.
Gremio would be willing to sell 28-year-old defender Walter Kannemann for £10.2million
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