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Arsenal wants Grosskreutz, agrees deal with Villarreal for Gabriel

• Coquelin stalls on new contract

ARSENAL have launched a surprise bid to sign Kevin Grosskreutz this month, and hope the Borussia Dortmund star’s boyhood support of the north London club will prove decisive in their quest to bring him to the Emirates, reports the London’s Daily Star.

  According to the Daily Star, the Gunners have already made a £3.7 million offer for a player that is capable of operating in numerous positions as Arsene Wenger looks to add to his options available in midfield and defence.

  Grosskreutz was part of the Germany squad that lifted the World Cup in Brazil last summer, so it’s a little surprising how modest his transfer valuation is, especially in the typically inflated mid-season window.

  The 26-year-old has just under 18 months remaining on his current deal at the Westfalenstadion, and with Jurgen Klopp’s side still languishing near the bottom of the Bundesliga table in what has been a disastrous campaign so far for the German giants, Grosskreutz could be forgiven for looking to jump ship.

  Arsenal scouts were impressed with the versatile midfielder – who can also play on the right side of defence – during both meetings with Borussia Dortmund in the Champions League this term, so don’t be surprised to see Wenger press ahead with plans to follow up the recent capture of Krystian Bielik with another signing before the transfer deadline on February 3.

  Elsewhere, the Gunners have finally agreed a £13.4million fee with Villarreal to sign their centre back Gabriel Paulista.

   Arsenal have been locked in negotiations to sign Gabriel all week, with Arsene Wenger desperate to add another defender to his squad.

An opening offer of £6million fell short on Wednesday, but respected Spanish journalist Kike Marin says a fee has now finally been agreed – with Gabriel now set to fly to London for a medical.

  The £13.8million fee is slightly below Gabriel’s release clause, and now Arsenal are expecting to win a work permit to wrap up the transfer.

  Meanwhile, Francis Coquelin 

is reportedly playing hardball with Arsenal as he looks for assurances over his first-team future before putting pen to paper on any new deal.

  The 23-year-old came of age in the Gunners’ 2-0 win over Manchester City, putting in the kind of dominant midfield display that Arsenal fans have been longing to see for the past few seasons.

  After that performance, it emerged that the midfielder had been offered a new contract by manager Arsene Wenger, marking a huge turn-around in fortunes for a player that had been loaned out to Charlton Athletic in November.



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