Laurent Koscielny
Koscielny scored against Bayern last season.

Barcelona and Bayern Munich's interest in Arsenal defender Lauren Koscielny could disrupt the Gunners' summer transfer plans.

The French international was among the club's most consistent defenders last season, while he weighed in with important goals against Bayern Munich and Newcastle United as the north Londoners enjoyed a late season renaissance which ensured qualification for next season's Champions League.

Manager Arsene Wenger is understood have been handed a transfer kitty in the region of £70m, and while no major transfer deals have been completed thus far, the 63 year old boss will be concerned that both Barcelona and Bayern Munich have registered interest in the 27 year old.

The player's agent Stephane Courbois said: "There is interest. I know that Laurent is part of a shortlist of three or four players for both clubs."

Despite enduring a campaign littered with injury, Koscielny made 29 starts in all competitions last term, ousting Thomas Vermaelen at the heart of Arsenal's defence.

His permanent return to the first-team coincided with a run of form which saw Arsenal leapfrog rivals Tottenham Hotspur in the race for a fourth Champions League spot, helping to keep four clean sheets in the final nine games of the campaign.

Koscielny's headed in Arsenal's second goal in the win over Champions League winners Bayern in the knock-out phase, before his toe-poked effort on the final day of the league season against Newcastle delivered top tier European football for a 16<sup>th consecutive campaign.

With captain Thomas Vermaelen down the pecking order at The Emirates Stadium and Johan Djourou set to leave for Hannover, Arsenal will be lacking at centre back should Koscielny move this summer, leaving the club to revaluate their transfer targets this summer.

Much of the attention has been on adding to the club's forward line, with the likes of Gonzalo Higuain and Stevan Jovetic linked with a move to the Premier League, but any move for the pair could be waylaid by Koscielny's departure and once again undermine Arsenal's hopes of closing the gap on the Manchester clubs and Europa League winners Chelsea.

Chief executive Ivan Gazidis has maintained the club can offer competitive wages to new players this summer. However should they be unable to keep Koscielny, regarded as one of their most important players, it would represent another summer where Arsenal fail to deliver on public intent.