Arsenal are reportedly set to make an £8m bid for Newcastle United midfielder Cheick Tiote.
According to the Mirror, Arsene Wenger has turned his attention to the tough tackling Ivorian star to add some much needed steel to the Arsenal midfield.
The Gunners boss has been on the market for a holding midfielder throughout the summer and has been linked to various players with Southampton’s Morgan Schneiderlin and Real Madrid’s Sami Khedira being the most frequently mentioned names.
The 64-year-old is keen to bring in a midfielder, as he looks for a long-term replacement for new Arsenal skipper Mikel Arteta.
Tiote joined Newcastle in 2010 from Eredivisie club FC Twente and has made 107 appearances for the club. He is known for his tenacity and no nonsense style, but can sometimes be a little too brash which can be detrimental to the team.
The 28-year-old midfielder does not fit the mould of a Wenger type of midfielder, but will nonetheless add more depth in the holding midfield department.
Apart from Arsenal, the Ivory Coast international has been linked with moves to the Premier League big guns like Manchester United and Chelsea in the past, but Newcastle were reluctant to do business at the time. However, it is claimed that they are now willing to listen to offers for the player and will let him leave for the right price.
If Tiote makes his move to the Emirates, he will become the second player to arrive at Arsenal from St James’ Park this summer, as the Gunners have already snapped up Mathieu Debuchy from the Tyneside club.
Meanwhile, Gunners forward Theo Walcott has revealed that Arsenal have a new 40-metre sprint record holder. The Englishman had broken Thierry Henry’s record which was 4.82 seconds, but has now confirmed that young Spanish right-back Hector Bellerin has broken his record which was set at 4.42 seconds.
“I beat his [Henry’s] sprint record which Hector has now broken,” Walcott said, as quoted on Arsenal’sofficial site.