Arsenal director Edu has tabled a formal bid for the services of Fiorentina marksman Dusan Vlahovic, according to reports. The Gunners are believed to be keen on bringing the 21-year-old to north London over the coming weeks as they step up their efforts to land a new first-choice striker ahead of the Premier League run-in.
Arsenal are currently facing an uncertain future at the top of the pitch, with the likes of Alexandre Lacazette and Eddie Nketiah set to become free agents at the end of the season as things stand.
Meanwhile, there are questions over the standing of exiled striker Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, who has not featured at club level since early December.
The Gunners have long been credited with an interest in bringing Vlahovic to the Emirates Stadium, with the Fiorentina man widely considered to be among Europe’s finest young talents.
He has chipped in with 19 goals in all competitions so far this season and appears to be set for the exit door in the near future after turning down the possibility of a new deal in Italy.
The Serbia international is said to be near the very top of Edu’s shortlist and it seems as though the wheels are finally in motion with regards to an imminent move for his signature.
Arsenal have submitted a formal offer in the region of £58.4million for Vlahovic, according to La Repubblica.
The report claims that Fiorentina president Rocco Commisso is now considering whether to accept the bid or wait until the summer to let go of his prized asset.
It is said that Vlahovic was initially happy to leave at the end of the season, but Arsenal’s insistence on a move has the potential to tempt him into a Premier League switch before the January window slams shut.
Commisso lashed out at Vlahovic earlier this month, insisting that he should be grateful to Fiorentina for giving him the platform to showcase his talents and develop into a top striker instead of entertaining the idea of a move elsewhere in the middle of the season.
“He developed here, and he should give recognition, whatever happens, to the club that got him to where he is,” Commisso told the Financial Times.
“The more I live here, with this crazy sport, the more I realise how screwed up it is.”
Meanwhile, Arsenal icon Paul Merson recently urged his former club to sign Vlahovic by any means necessary in order to realise their ambitions of establishing themselves as one of the Premier League’s top sides once again.
“They should be breaking the bank to get Dusan Vlahovic in from Fiorentina in the summer because he would make them title contenders,” wrote Merson in his Daily Star column.
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“I’ve heard Arsenal doesn’t interest him right now and I can understand that. But he might change his mind if they finish in the top four and offer him a lorryload of money.
“Arsenal [could] play him every week because Aubameyang will be gone, Lacazette will probably be gone and so will Eddie Nketiah.
“They will need a goalscorer, and Vlahovic scores goals. He’s also still young so he should get better and you’re not wasting money paying a 29-year-old on the way down.”