Arsenal have been credited with an interest in Bayer Leverkusen attacker and reported Chelsea and Manchester United target Leon Bailey as manager Arsene Wenger looks to prepare for life after Alexis Sanchez.

The Gunners saw Sanchez leave for Old Trafford on Monday (22 January) but they did welcome Henrikh Mkhitaryan to north London and are now pressing on with a deal to bring Borussia Dortmund forward Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang to England's capital before the end of the January transfer window.

Arsenal have also been heavily linked with a move for Bordeaux's Malcom, a target for their arch-rivals Tottenham Hotspur, but according to German publication Kicker they have now set their sights on a switch for Leverkusen's Bailey, who has been in splendid form so far this season.

Leverkusen paid £12.8m to sign the young Jamaican from Genk last January and after a quiet start the 20-year-old has started to fulfil his potential, most recently evidenced with a stunning backheel goal against Hoffenheim. Bailey has scored nine goals and provided five assists for Die Werkself, who are certainly in the race for Champions League qualification.

His performances certainly have not gone unnoticed by the cream of the Premier League's crop, with Chelsea and United both linked with the versatile winger in recent weeks.

But Arsenal, who still haven't replaced right-sided midfielders Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain and Theo Walcott, both now residing on Merseyside, are now ready to rival their counterparts for the coveted starlet, who has made no secret of his desire to one day ply his trade in the Premier League.

"Of course I have a dream club, but I will not tell. Basically England was and still is my dream," Bailey told Bild earlier this month. "And if I keep working hard, I'm sure it will work someday."

A January move for Bailey is highly unlikely given that United have signed Sanchez while Arsenal and Chelsea are currently prioritising other targets, but it remains to be seen if any of the aforementioned trio decide to test Leverkusen's resolve in the summer.

Heiko Herrlich's side will certainly fight to keep Bailey as they bid to re-establish themselves in the Champions League, and their position over their prized asset's future is no doubt strengthened by the lack of release clause in the Kingston-born starlet's contract.

Leon Bailey
Bailey is being courted by a host of European clubs. Getty Images