Arsenal Transfers: Stan Kroenke ‘green lights’ Moussa Diaby pursuit

Arsenal are in the market for another wide player before the summer transfer window closes and they are reportedly keen on making a move for Bayer Leverkusen’s Moussa Diaby.

The Gunners were heavily reliant on Bukayo Saka to start close to every Premier League game last season due to Mikel Arteta’s lack of faith in the club’s alternate options. Nicolas Pepe is a player they’ll look to sell this summer and, ideally, a replacement for the Ivorian who’ll provide stiffer competition for Saka will be brought in.

Arsenal tried to sign Raphinha from Leeds earlier this summer, but the Brazilian only had eyes for Barcelona.

Nevertheless, their pursuit of Raphinha depicted their desire to sign another big name in attack. The likes of Leroy Sane and Cody Gakpo have already been linked with moves, while Bayer Leverkusen’s Diaby is another name that’s starting to circulate in transfer rumour mills.

Arsenal owner Stan Kroenke reportedly ‘green lights’ Moussa Diaby pursuit

French international Diaby is a player that fits the bill. He’s two-footed, direct, adept off both flanks, and he’ll certainly compete with Saka for a starting berth.

The 23-year-old contributed to 25 Bundesliga goals in 32 appearances last season.

Following the departure of Kai Havertz and long-term injury sustained by Florian Wirtz, Diaby emerged as the leading protagonist for Leverkusen in 2021/22 and it’s no surprise that the German club have no interest in selling their star winger.

The player himself, meanwhile, said earlier this summer that he was happy to stay in Germany for another campaign.

“I’ve made my decision and will play for Bayer Leverkusen again next season,” Diaby said amid interest from Newcastle.

An approach from Arsenal, however, could convince the Frenchman to have a change of heart. According to Football Insider, owner Kroenke has green-lighted the club’s pursuit of Diaby, who is valued at £60m by Leverkusen.

There’s no doubting that this will be a hard deal to pull off, but it’d also potentially be a transformative bit of business given Diaby’s talent.

Speaking after Friday night’s win over Crystal Palace, Arteta said the club were still looking to do something in the transfer market: “We are going to try. There are still things we planned, if we could do them it would be great.”

Could those plans involve Moussa Diaby?