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Arsenal have reportedly turned to Yannick Carrasco as they look for a new wide man after being frustrated in their bid to sign Ivan Perisic from Inter Milan.
According to Sky in Italy (h/t Sky Sports News), the Gunners are in talks with Dalian Yifang about Carrasco, who moved to the Chinese Super League club from Atletico Madrid in February 2018.
Arsenal looked well set to sign Perisic after the Croatian handed in a transfer request at Inter.
But the clubs reached an impasse as Inter wanted to sell the 29-year-old permanently, whereas Arsenal where only willing to sign him in the summer after an initial loan period, per Libero (h/t Football Italia).
Carrasco, 25, is not happy in China, and Dalian would be open to letting him leave on loan:
Kristof Terreur 📰🎥 @HLNinEngeland
Yannick Carrasco was offered to Arsenal at the beginning of the window. Wasn’t their first option, but things have changed. His people haven’t travelled to England as yet, but are aware of the interest. “All options are still open.” #afc https://t.co/PDizH4sRql
That is crucial for Arsenal as manager Unai emery has said they are unable to make permanent signings in the January window.
Belgium international Carrasco first showed promise at Monaco, where he made his senior debut before earning a €20 million move to Atleti in 2015.
His move to China came after he fell out of favour under Atletico manager Diego Simeone, and he returned seven goals and five assists in 25 appearances in his debut Chinese Super League season.
Carrasco mainly operates on the left flank, although he can also play as a striker.
He would arguably be a more risky signing than Perisic, who has proved his quality in previous stops in Germany and on the international stage.
Many Arsenal fans will likely be sceptical if the Gunners sign a player who has been plying his trade in China.
But there is precedent for players returning to Europe after a stint in the Chinese Super League and excelling. The most notable example would be Axel Witsel, who has been crucial for Bundesliga leaders Borussia Dortmund this season after joining from Tianjin Quanjian in August.
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