Arsenal have begun formally talking with Barcelona over signing Spanish forward David Villa, as manager Arsene Wenger has admitted the club are currently short of striking options.

Villa has scored five goals in 14 appearances so far this season, though has spent most of the time restricted to the bench, prompting speculation this month that he could abandon the Nou Camp for pastures new. Arsenal are now looking to sign the striker before the transfer window shuts.

Whilst Arsene Wenger has insisted he is content with the quality of his strike-force, he did say that he felt the club could do with one more forward to add extra firepower to the squad. The Gunners signed strikers Lukas Podolski and Olivier Giroud in the summer, and have recently tied down their top-scoring star Theo Walcott on a three-year deal. has reported that Gunner's contract negotiator Dicky Law is now in Spain attempting to thrash out a deal with the Catalan club over the player. They also report that Arsenal are prepared to offer up to £13.8m for the 31-year-old, and match his current 100k wages.

Despite their disappointing sixth-placed position in the table currently, the Gunners are actually the Premier League's third-highest scorers on 46, behind runway leaders Manchester United on 57, and Chelsea on 47. But Wenger will hope that a marquee signing like Villa can galvanize the squad in their bid to secure qualification for the Champions League next year.

Written and presented by Alfred Joyner