Arsenal in for dominant Prem star who’s miles clear of his rivals, as Arteta loses faith in his own signing

Arsenal are determined to snatch a Premier League midfielder who is head and shoulders above his rivals, and a deal can only be made if Mikel Arteta axes one of his own signings, per reports.

The Gunners top the table at present and are once again entrenched on a bona fide title race. Arsenal have not been as explosive going forward this season, though through the addition of Declan Rice, have greater steel and strength in the spine of their side.

Rice has primarily filled the holding role this season amid Thomas Partey’s injury absences. Captain Martin Odegaard plays on the right side of the midfield three, with the left-sided role up for grabs

However, according to multiple sources, Arsenal and Arteta are intent on signing an out-and-out holding midfielder to replace Partey.

Doing so would free up Rice to assume more of a box-to-box role on the left side of the holder. Per Fabrizio Romano and now The Mirror, the player Arteta wants is uunparalelled in the Premier League.

Romano recently confirmed Arsenal are chasing Fulham destroyer Joao Palhinha.

“What I can confirm about Palhinha, this was around the media in recent days, is that there are also English clubs interested in Palhinha,” he said on streaming platform Kick.

“One of those clubs is Arsenal. It is true that Arsenal appreciate the player. There are some people at the club who consider Palhinha a very good player. It’s one of the players they discussed internally.”

Palhinha hints at England stay despite Bayern interest

Bayern Munich came within a whisker of signing the dominant Portuguese for roughly £60m over the summer.

Palhinha even travelled to Germany and undertook a medical, though Fulham pulled the plug at the eleventh hour after failing to sign a replacement.

Bayern’s interest has maintained, though Palhinha himself has hinted he could remain in the Premier League if leaving Fulham.

Via the Telegraph, Palhinha was recently quoted as tipping the EPL as the best league in the world and also the league that best suits his game.

“I always looked to the Premier League as the best league for me as a player,” said Palhinha.

My characteristics, what I want to do on the pitch, for me it is the best league that I fit.”

Now, a second source in the form of Mirror has echoed Romano’s claims regarding Arsenal and Palhinha.

Palhinha to Arsenal? Partey among those who must go first

They state Arteta is understood to be weighing up a move for Palhinha and signing a central midfielder is the Spaniard’s ‘priority’ next month.

Budget is tight, meaning player exits will be required if Arsenal are to land a player valued around the £60m mark last summer.

As such, it’s claimed Thomas Partey could be among those moved on amid a ‘mounting belief that Arteta could grow tired of not being able to rely on’ the Ghanaian.

Partey has been restricted to just four Premier League outings this season due to injury. Now aged 30, his injury woes are unlikely to ease from here on out.

Selling Partey by itself would not generate enough funds to cover the cost of signing Palhinha. Other exits would be required and Eddie Nketiah is another who could be sacrificed.

Palhinha dominating the EPL once again

Clearing the deck for Palhinha would come with some risk attached given he’s already 28. The bulk of Arsenal’s signings under Edu’s guidance have been far younger than that.

However, Palhinha is a dominant force in the Premier League and would represent a signing for the here and now. If his impact helped Arsenal lift their first EPL title since 2004, the fact he’s 28 would not matter one bit.

Palhinha destroyed the Premier League in the tackles category last season. His scarcely-believable mark of 147 was a whopping 47 better than second-placed Moises Caicedo (100).

Palhinha is once again dominating the tackle stats this time around, with his mark of 64 putting him well clear of Sheffield United’s Vinicius Souza with 45 in second.

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