Chris Martin Scotland Grzegorz Krychowiak Poland
Grzegorz Krychowiak (R) is a big January target for Arsenal manager Arsene WengerReuters

Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger is stepping up his interest in a defensive midfielder by making a bid for Sevilla's Grzegorz Krychowiak in the January transfer window.

Arsenal have been awful on the defensive front this season, too many times leaving themselves open to a counter-attack and horribly exposing the central defenders.

The Gunners lost four points from a winning position in a matter of days in their last two matches, allowing Anderlecht to fight back and pull out a 3-3 draw from 3-0 down in the Champions League, before gifting Swansea a 2-1 victory after initially taking the lead via Alexis Sanchez in the English Premier League on Sunday.

Wenger has rightly come under criticism for his side's defensive troubles, and the need of the hour remains signing a central defender in the January transfer window along with a defensive midfielder.

The likes of William Carvalho and Morgan Schneiderlin have been heavily linked for the latter role, and another name that has come up of late is Krychowiak, who only moved to Sevilla from Reims in July.

With the likes of Borussia Dortmund also reportedly showing an interest, Wenger is ready to make his move in the January transfer window by putting in an £18 million bid for the midfielder according to the Daily Star.

The Daily Express also reports interest from Arsenal for Krychowiak, but that particular report mentions Arsenal are ready to fork out his entire buyout clause amount of £24 million.

With Wenger reportedly only given around £20 million to spend in the January transfer window, with a higher amount reserved for the summer, it remains to be seen if the Arsenal manager will be willing to spend that much money on one player.

While a defensive midfielder is essential, the priority remains a central defender, with Nacho Monreal clearly struggling in that unfamiliar role.

Laurent Koscielny continues to struggle with an Achilles injury and it is still unknown when the defender will return to action. Calum Chambers is the other option for Wenger at centre-back, but with Mathieu Debuchy still sidelined, the manager needs him to cover at right-back, with the Frenchman not quite ready yet to place his faith on the young Hector Bellerin.

If Wenger can complete a deal quickly for a central defender, then he can turn his attentions towards bringing in a strong defensive midfielder capable of giving some much-needed protection to the back four of Arsenal.