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Report: Arsenal make approach as Arteta eyes £21.5m 'absolute engine' who 'steps up on the big stage'

Arsenal have approached Lille to register their interest in a summer transfer for Euro 2020 star Renato Sanches, per 90min.

The Gunners are considering a move to sign the Portugal midfielder as Mikel Arteta strives to reshape his squad at the Emirates Stadium. The Spaniard is keen to oversee a vast overhaul and will be backed to spend big on targets.

Arsenal want to add youthful energy to Arteta’s plans in the transfer window and could include Sanches in their rebuild. The north London side are already in talks with Lille, via intermediaries, to discuss the 23-year-old’s situation.

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Arsenal have asked Lille to keep them updated with any developments over Sanches leaving the Stade Pierre Mauroy this summer. They have also begun sounding out how much a deal for the 29-cap dynamo would cost.

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Sanches is open to leaving Les Dogues in the off-season after helping Lille to claim their first Ligue 1 title in a decade last term. He started 14 of 23 outings and offered one goal plus three assists between 12 games out through injury.

The Portuguese would also be open to a return to the Premier League, as he has ‘unfished business’ in England. Sanches flopped during a season-long loan at Swansea from Bayern Munich in 2017/18, playing just 12 top-flight games.

Lille will likely also welcome bids for Sanches providing they eclipse the €25m (£21.5m) paid to Bayern in 2019. And he is raising his valuation with stellar performances at Euro 2020 with a raft of robust performances in midfield.

TBR’s view: Arsenal should sign Lille star Sanches

Arsenal may have to break open the chequebook and write a fair few zeros to land Lille star Sanches. But a deal for the Portuguese is certainly worth Arteta exploring, as his arrival could change the look of the Gunners’ engine room.

Sanches has stood out at Euro 2020 with robust and dynamic performances in Fernando Santos’ midfield. His skilful runs have offered plenty of buzz, while winning possession back with such ease to dominate games.

Arsenal fans have already called for Arteta to sign Sanches after his standout display against France. But his efforts will be catching the attention of more managers than just Arteta, while Luis Enrique has urged Liverpool to swoop.

“This is the man I want to replace Gini [Wijnaldum],” he wrote on Instagram. “He steps up on the big stage. Still only 23 & he just won the league with Lille. This man is an absolute engine & knows how to dictate a midfield like Gini did. He’s physically a level above others, he seems like a perfect fit for [Jurgen] Klopp.”

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