Arsenal are weighing up a potential swoop for former Chelsea nemesis Diego Costa in the January transfer window, according to stunning reports.
Gunners boss Mikel Arteta faces a shortage of striking options after Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang reported for international duty for Gabon at the Africa Cup of Nations.
Alexandre Lacazette and Eddie Nketiah are both available for Arteta as strikers, but both Arsenal players’ long-term futures are in doubt.
Nketiah, 22, is out of contract in the summer and has been linked with a potential January move to either Brighton or Crystal Palace.
Lacazette, 30, will also see his current Arsenal deal expire at the end of the season and has attracted interest from Barcelona, Newcastle and Atletico Madrid.
Arteta is also without Arsenal youngster Folarin Balogun, who recently secured a loan move to Championship side Middlesbrough until the end of the season.
Costa left Atletico Madrid in 2020 after his contract was terminated and returned to his native homeland of Brazil, with the striker signing for Atletico Mineiro last August.
The 33-year-old ex-Chelsea star made 19 appearances for Mineiro and scored five times and picked up a single assist before he was released by the club this month.
According to Goal, La Liga outfit Cadiz are believed to have made an offer for Costa.
However, the offer made to the former Atletico striker ‘did not seduce him,’ with Costa weighing up his next destination.
It has also been reported that Arsenal and Brazilian side Corinthians could table an offer for Costa.
The Gunners have not made an ‘official proposal’ to sign the free agent, but it is believed that Arsenal have made an ‘informal consultation’ over his availability.
Costa could provide Arteta with a short-term solution for his striking options and the Gunners wouldn’t need to splash out a hefty fee to secure his services.
The Spain international, who also represented Brazil before he switched national allegiances, scored 58 times in 120 appearances for Chelsea.
Costa, who arrived at Chelsea from Atletico in 2014, lifted two Premier League titles and a League Cup during his three seasons at Stamford Bridge.
Atletico director of football Rodrigo Caetano revealed that Costa had informed the Brazilian side over his desire to leave the club.
“The reasons given were adaptation, personal issues,” he said.
“When he goes to that side, there’s not much to argue about. He stayed with us until the end, he was a very important piece, competitive athlete.
“He was afraid of this long period that he stayed in Europe, he made it clear that at some point, if he didn’t feel comfortable, we could make an agreement of this type.
“We accepted the request and we are building the best agreement for all parties. We appreciate his delivery and this period with us. It is very likely that he will not stay with us this season from the sides.”
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