Karim Benzema Real Madrid
Arsenal are pondering a mega bid for Real Madrid striker Karim BenzemaReuters

Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger is ready to pay big money for a striker, with Karim Benzema from Real Madrid the No.1 target.

Benzema has been constantly linked with a move to Arsenal, even before he signed for Real Madrid from Lyon.

With Arsenal not quite able to get their world-class striker in the last few seasons, Wenger is ready to make a massive bid to try and tempt Real Madrid to sell Benzema.

With Carlo Ancelotti sacked by Real Madrid on Monday, there will be some players wondering what next, and Wenger is ready to take advantage of that uneasy situation by putting in a €50 million (£35 million) bid, according to Goal.

While the last thing Real Madrid need is money, much will depend on what manager the club appoint – it is said to be Rafa Benitez – and how that manager looks at Benzema.

Also it is a known fact that the Real Madrid president, Florentino Perez, is a big fan of Benzema, and, therefore, it will not be easy to prise him away from the Bernabeu.

The report also suggests Arsenal are willing to sell Olivier Giroud in order to make room for Benzema, which in itself raises a few eyebrows. While Wenger has previously said he will not bring two leading French strikers, who are in competition for a starting berth in the national side, to the same team, it is even more difficult to fathom the Arsenal manager selling Giroud.

Giroud is coming off a really good season for Arsenal, despite losing three months through injury, and if he continues that kind of form, it will bode well for the club for next season as well.

What Arsenal seem to need is another goalscoring striker who can work with and without Giroud in the starting lineup, which suggests Benzema might not be the obvious answer, despite the obvious class of former Lyon man – you always feel it has to be either Giroud or Benzema.

Thierry Henry recently said Arsenal need to sign a "world-class" striker to compete for the English Premier League title, implying Giroud was not of that class, but the Arsenal legend backtracked on those comments, insisting what he meant was that his former club need to buy another really good forward who can compete, complement and get the best out of Giroud.

"Alexis Sanchez made me believe he can [take Arsenal to the next level]," Henry told Sky Sports. "But I do believe he needs help. I believe also that Olivier Giroud needs help.

"I said what I said and people took it a bit the wrong way. When we were winning titles it was because [Nwankwo] Kanu could do a job when I needed a rest.

"I think [Arsenal] need another striker -- that's what I said the other day -- that has other characteristics than Giroud.

"I think they need to improve that [squad] with other guys. When I talked about the spine and talking about the goalkeeper and a centre-back and a holding midfielder and a striker, I'm not saying to the guys 'leave and let [the new signings] come and play', no, compete."

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