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Arsenal ‘step up recruitment plans and Mikel Arteta plans to pursue Sevilla defender Diego Carlos’

Arsenal are setting in motion their transfer plans this summer after their FA Cup win and are reportedly eyeing up highly-rated Sevilla centre back Diego Carlos. 

The Gunners received a financial boost after their triumph at Wembley on Saturday, which meant they qualified for next season’s Europa League.

As such, manager Mikel Arteta is outlining his top transfer targets and according to The Telegraph, Arsenal are one of a number of Premier League clubs interested in Brazilian defender Carlos. 

However, the report details that Arsenal would have to negotiate a fee with Sevilla, with Carlos’ £68million release clause out of their price range. 

Sevilla could accept less, with a fee of £54.5m reportedly mooted by the LaLiga club, but even that would represent a significant outlay. 

Carlos joined Sevilla in May 2019 from French side Nantes, and missed just three league games this season as the Spaniards qualified for the Champions League.  

A cheaper alternative for Arteta in defence would be free agent Malang Sarr, who left Nice at the end of the season. 

Meanwhile, Sportsmail reported on Sunday night that Arteta is considering offloading as many as nine first-team players in order to raise funds for players this summer. 

Arteta knows he must sell players to generate the money required to land his first-choice transfer targets — and he could even offload Alexandre Lacazette or Hector Bellerin if a sizeable offer is made for either player. 

Sokratis, Matteo Guendouzi, Lucas Torreira, Henrikh Mkhitaryan and Sead Kolasinac — as well as Shkodran Mustafi and Rob Holding, who have played key roles for Arteta in recent weeks — are also in the shop window. 

Arteta wants Atletico Madrid midfielder Thomas Partey, and the club have a long-term interest in Chelsea forward Willian, whose contract is set to expire.

Arsenal are interested in Barcelona forward Philippe Coutinho but financing a deal for the former Liverpool star could prove difficult. They also want to extend midfielder Dani Ceballos’s loan from Real Madrid. 

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