Arsenal are poised today to complete the £55.5million club-record signing of Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang – but the deal is hinged on a set of moves including Olivier Giroud, David Luiz and Michy Batshuayi.
Arsenal have agreed a deal with Borussia Dortmund for Aubameyang after more than a fortnight’s negotiations and the Gabon international has agreed a three-year contract worth around £180,000 a week, which would make him the highest paid player at the Emirates.
But Dortmund will only sanction the 28-year-old’s sale once they have secured a replacement and, with
Arsenal striker Giroud not interested in a move to Germany, they now want Chelsea striker Batshuayi.
The Belgian is keen, with talks ongoing between the clubs potentially over a loan deal with a permanent move in the summer.
But Chelsea will only let Batshuayi move if they can secure a replacement – and they want Arsenal striker Giroud, as revealed In Express Sport on Saturday.
Gunners manager Wenger, whose side visit Swansea this evening, is willing to sell Giroud but wants Chelsea’s Brazilian defender Luiz, another out of favour with manager Antonio Conte, as part of the £35m deal.
He is also in talks with West Brom over defender Jonny Evans.
Chelsea want a loan deal for Giroud but may be willing to offer a permanent move with Luiz included.
Another potential complication is that West Ham and Marseille are also interested in Giroud.
Chelsea’s bid to sign Roma forward Edin Dzeko ground to a halt yesterday, with the Premier League club reluctant to offer a £7m-a-year deal to 2021 for a player who turns 32 in March.
Another option for Chelsea could be Leicester striker Islam Slimani.