Arsenal have scouts in Russia watching Alexandr Golovin, according to reports from The Express.
The attacking midfielder has shone for the World Cup hosts so far and has been attracting interest from a number of clubs, including Juventus, Manchester United and Chelsea.
Unai Emery has identified the CSKA Moscow player as one he would like to bring to the Emirates Stadium and, sentiment aside, he would represent an upgrade on Santi Cazorla and Jack Wilshere.
He has managed five key passes at the tournament – the joint-fifth most – and is one of two players to have managed more than one assist.
Those direct contributions for goals for Yuri Gazinsky and Artem Dzuba show he can deliver a delicately-weighted cross from deep and the player’s technical excellence has also made him one of eight players to have scored from outside the box – a delightful free-kick that rounded off the scoring in the 5-0 win over Saudi Arabia on opening night.
Sport Express reports that Arsenal scouts are preparing a comprehensive report on the playmaker, who is regarded as one of the best Russian players to have come through in recent times.
Golovin has reportedly had a £16m bid rejected from Juventus, with multiple reports claiming that CSKA are holding out for a fee of £25m.
He scored seven times and created a further 6 in 41 matches last term , with only one central midfielder in the Russian Premier League playing more key passes than his 21. Although none of those midfielders completed as many successful dribbles as Golovin’s 51, his runs with the ball are about intelligence rather than raw pace so one or two teammates next to him capable of stretching play would also help.
The 22-year-old though would undoubtedly strengthen our squad, on which Emery is already beginning to make his mark.