Karim Benzema Real Madrid
Arsenal are reportedly after Real Madrid striker Karim Benzema (Reuters)Reuters

Real Madrid striker Karim Benzema is reportedly being targeted by Arsenal as manager Arsene Wenger looks to strengthen the Gunners' attack this summer, according to ESPN.

Though Arsenal are not sure whether the 26-year-old, who has only a year remaining on his contract with Real, will be available this summer, Wenger is keen on the France international.

The Gunners have failed to sign the former Olympique Lyonnais striker on two previous occasions as Los Blancos' asking price was too high.

However, now that Arsenal have shown they are capable of making big-money signings (by signing Germany playmaker Mesut Ozil for £42.5m last summer), Real may be willing to cash in on the Frenchman, if they get the right price.

It is understood that Real, who are short on senior strikers themselves, will sell Benzema only if they find a suitable replacement for him first.

Los Blancos are reportedly interested in Liverpool's in-form talisman Luis Suarez, despite the Uruguayan, who scored a record-equalling 31 goals in the Premier League, making it clear that he is not keen on leaving Anfield this summer.

Still, Liverpool and Suarez may change their minds, if Real come up with a generous offer. And selling Benzema would allow the Spanish giants to balance the books, as well as to adhere to UEFA's Financial Fair Play rule.

Arsenal, who are on the verge of bringing back Carlos Vela from Real Sociedad, are also rumoured to be interested in Bayern Munich striker Mario Mandzukic, who scored 18 goals in the Bundesliga this season.

The 27-year-old Croat is understood to be looking for a move away from Munich this summer as Borussia Dortmund's Robert Lewandowski (Bundesliga's top scorer once again) will be joining the Bavarians on a free transfer this summer.

Arsenal heavily relied on Frenchman Olivier Giroud this season as the club's other forwards - Lukas Podolski, Theo Walcott and Yaya Sanogo - missed large chunks of the season due to injuries, while Nicklas Bendtner fell out of favour once again for his off-the-field antics.

And that's why Wenger is desperate to bolster Arsenal's attack with a quality striker this summer.