Arsenal are preparing a move to sign Manchester City youngster Abdisalam Ibrahim this summer, according to the Express. The 21-year-old is currently on loan with the Norwegian club Stromsgodset.
The report suggest the Gunners manager Arsene Wenger is looking to strengthen his squad in the summer and the north London club's chief scout is set to fly to Norway to watch the midfielder in action for Stromsgodset.
Ibrahim's current deal at the Etihad runs down in 2014. The player has been in impressive form in recent times for the Norwegian outfit and was watched by former Arsenal and Manchester City star Patrick Vieira during his side's recent tie against Sandnes Ulf.
The midfielder is unlikely to get regular first team action once he returns to City. The situation could force him a move away from the Etihad at the end of the season and Ibrahim recently hinted that he would consider his future with the Premier League champions in the summer.
"I am happy the way that the season has started and it is nice to hear Patrick Vieira was here to watch me. I want to continue improving and remain focused on my game and we will see in the summer what Manchester City plan to do with me," Sky Sports quoted Ibrahim as saying.
Should Ibrahim join the Gunners in the summer, it will give the Frenchman more options during the team selection in the midfield role and is also likely to get immediate first team action at the Emirates.
City Defender Hails Bale
Meanwhile, Pablo Zabaleta has hailed Tottenham Hotspur star Gareth Bale by claiming the Welshman as the best player in the Premier League. The 23-year-old has been in impressive form for the north London club scoring 16 goals in 26 league appearances this season.
The Argentine defender also believes ex-City star Mario Balotelli's departure from the Etihad was "inevitable" The Italian striker completed a move to join AC Milan in January.
"The best Premier League player? Gareth Bale, a force of nature," Zabaleta said, adding "I think Balotelli's departure was inevitable. It had become a difficult situation. Mario is a great player, who must learn to better manage his life off the field. He should be more disciplined and quiet. Returning to Italy and staying near to his family is helping him."