Arsenal are reportedly interested in Bayern Munich holding midfielder Luiz Gustavo and are now expected to make an approach for him at the end of the season.
Goal.com reports Arsene Wenger has earmarked the £15m-rated Brazilian as a summer target and is looking at the player as a direct replacement for Alex Song. The Gunners have been short in defensive midfield, with Abou Diaby regularly failing to remain fit for majority of the season, putting further pressure on the defence. The club have conceded 29 goals this season and Wenger is hoping that the Gustavo's presence will help to provide better protection for his defenders.
Gustavo has been linked with a January move to Arsenal, having failed to make the Bayern starting line-up this season, owing to the presence of £34m summer signing Javi Martinez.
However, Bayern's dissidence to let the midfielder leave in January hampered Gunners' chances, thus having to wait till the summer for a potential switch. The 25-year-old, who arrived at Allianz Arena from Hoffenheim in 2011, has made only 11 appearances this season, scoring three goals and assisting one.
Arteta: Arsenal Ready for Bayern
Meanwhile, Arsenal vice-captain Mikel Arteta has revealed the Gunners are better prepared for their round of 16 tie against Bayern Munich, after missing out against AC Milan at the same stage last season.
Wenger' side lost 4-0 at the San Siro to Milan in the first leg but made a valiant attempt in the second leg at the Emirates, where they led 3-0 at half time but failed to score the decisive goal, thus losing 4-3 on aggregate. Arteta believes the Gunners have learnt their lesson and will try to take the game to the opposition from the first minute than wait till the second leg to rectify their mistaes.
"We learnt a lot from [the Milan] game and how efficient you have to be when you play those teams. In the first leg, they had five shots and scored four goals. It was like we were ridiculous and the difference wasn't that big," the Spaniard told the Arsenal web site.
"We showed that in the second leg. We went 3-0 up and could have scored the fourth as well. The small details change it, but efficiency in those games - when you have players that can put the ball in the net - makes a real difference," Arteta added.