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Arsenal ‘still have interest’ in Moussa Diaby

Moussa Diaby 2022

Arsenal are second in the Premier League for goals this campaign, so they aren’t in desperate need of bolstering their attack, but Christian Falk believes Mikel Arteta wants more depth out wide to challenge on all fronts next season.

Despite having Gabriel Martinelli, Leandro Trossard, Bukayo Saka and Reiss Nelson who can play on the flanks, Falk says Arsenal are still monitoring the progress of Moussa Diaby and are in talks with his agent.

He wrote in his Caught Offside column: “Arsenal still have an interest in Diaby. The Bayer Leverkusen star’s agents are in contact with the club.” The 23-year-old joined Bayer Leverkusen from Paris Saint-Germain in 2019 and has gone on to make 156 appearances in all competitions, scoring 46 goals with 43 assists.

Diaby has made 32 appearances across the board this season, scoring 11 goals with six assists, so it’s easy to see why Arsenal would be keen. The French international wouldn’t come cheap, however, with Sky Sports revealing in January that Leverkusen want €100m (£88.5m) for the wide-man.

With 12 goals contributions in 22 Bundesliga games, coupled with nearly two chances created and more than one successful dribble per match, Diaby could be a good signing for Arsenal. But the Gunners’ record acquisition is €80m (£70.8m) on Nicolas Pepe from LOSC Lille, so it would be bold to splash out an entire summer’s budget on one player.

Levekusen are currently ninth in the German top-flight, nine points adrift of the Europa League spots, let alone the Champions League places, so Diaby might want to join a side looking to compete in Europe and go deep. Die Werkself were knocked out of the Champions League at the group stages, so Arsenal might be a more attractive proposition.

All depends on whether Arsenal will spend £90m on one player, but Nelson may be the reason they’re looking. The 23-year-old scored the winner in Arsenal’s 3-2 victory over Bournemouth, but he’s made just three Premier League appearances this season due to injury.

The England U21 international has scored seven goals with seven assists form 57 games at Arsenal but still isn’t commanding a starting place. He turns 24 later this year and has spent the campaign as an unused substitute or on the treatment table. Diaby might be a significant improvement.

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