Arsenal have been linked to Atlético Madrid forward Diego Costa, according to Spanish publication Mundo Deportivo. The 24-year-old Brazilian international enjoyed a competitive 2012/13 La Liga season, across Colombian international Radamel Falcao, scoring 10 goals and creating seven more from 24 starts.

Diego Costa

The Gunners are understood to want the South American to replace Ivory Coast international Gervinho, who has been linked with a switch to Serie A side Roma. According to, a formal bid of £6.9m has been submitted to Emirates chiefs; there is also interest from Ligue 1 side Olympique Marseille.

Meanwhile, the Romans are also interested in Diego Costa, according to the above publication; they see him as a replacement for outbound Argentina striker Pablo Osvaldo, who the Express linked to Manchester City.

An agreement with Atlético aside, interested clubs could have a hard time persuading Diego Costa to leave the Vicente Calderon, particularly with the arrival of Spain international and World Cup-winning striker David Villa, who moves from Barcelona to replace Falcao.

"I am working so that I grow and improve every day. There are great players here and I want to fight to be in the first XI. I hope to keep growing here. At Atleti," Costa said earlier this year after being linked with a €25m switch at that time.

The club's coach, Diego Simeone, is equally unlikely to want to release two strikers in one summer, even if Villa has been signed.

Per Mertesacker on Next Season

Meanwhile, Arsenal defender Per Mertesacker believes the Gunners have a good mix of players and can challenge for the Premier League this season. However, the German international insists his team mates must be as consistent as they were in the final weeks of last season, when they went 10 games unbeaten.

"We have a very good squad, full of potential and we want those qualities to come together. We have some experienced and some talented younger players - but we need to be consistent... this time we have to be ready from the very start. Therefore you need your experience and for the potential to come out as well," the 28-year-old said.