Arsenal are reportedly eyeing a summer move for AS Monaco midfielder Gregory Kondogbia on the request of manager Arsene Wenger.
The 22-year-old has been a long-term target of the Gunners, with Wenger trying to lure him to the Emirates in 2013 when he was at Sevilla.
However, the Gunners were beaten to the Frenchman's signature by Monaco, who ended up landing Kondogbia after meeting the €20 million release clause in his contract.
Although the midfielder has flourished at AS Monaco, he is not expected to stay at the Stade Louis II for long, as he is reportedly being coveted by a lot of top clubs including Real Madrid, Atletico Madrid and Valencia.
And according to the Metro, Wenger is urging the Gunners to quickly make a move for Kondogbia before someone else again pips them to his signature.
Wenger is reportedly very keen to land the midfielder as he has managed to flourish into an even better player at Monaco, using his commanding stature to intimidate strikers and forwards, while also possessing the ability to dribble, run with the ball and draw fouls for his side.
The Gunners are in need of exactly this kind of player as they evidently struggled in the central/defensive midfield position this season. They do have the likes of Mikel Arteta and Mathieu Flamini in that position, but both of them have struggled due to a combination of injuries and poor form this season.
Francis Coquelin has been playing of late and this has resulted in Arsenal themselves putting in a run of good form in the Premier League, where they have won eight out of their last ten fixtures.
However, Coquelin is still relatively inexperienced and Arsenal need someone more solid if they want to compete for the Premier League title and other trophies next season.
Kondogbia may well be the right man for the North London club as he will be able to protect centre-backs Laurant Koscielny and Per Mertesacker, while fullbacks Mathieu Debuchy, Hector Bellerin or Nacho Monreal get more freedom to move forward.
The French midfielder will also allow the likes of Alexis Sanchez, Mesut Ozil, Aaron Ramsey and Santi Cazorla to operate more freely as he is physically dominating and capable of holding the ball well and making the right passes at the right time.
Kondogbia, however, is unlikely to be given up by Monaco at a cheap price considering he is a key player for them and still has three more years remaining on his current contract.
So the Gunners will have to make a very good offer if they want to land the Frenchman this summer especially with Real Madrid also keeping tabs on the midfielder.