Arsenal Step Up Chasing Karim Benzema

Arsene Wenger is making fresh moves for Real Madrid star Karim Benzema.

Gunners boss Wenger is desperate to sign another striker in January and has asked to be kept informed on any developments on Benzema.

And significantly, Benzema is believed to be more open to a move after snubbing Arsenal’s advances in the summer when they were keen to bring him in.

Mirror Sport revealed in August that Arsenal had gone for Benzema, Mesut Ozil and Angel Di Maria – and they ended up landing one of the Real Madrid trio.

Germany midfielder Ozil has been a huge hit at the Emirates following his £42m but Arsenal are still determined to buy a striker to provide back-up and competition for Olivier Giroud.

Benzema has 18 months left on his contract, has endured a difficult season with the Madrid fans but has been starting more games and scoring goals in recent weeks.

France international Benzema, who has fallen behind Giroud in the national team, has always been one of Wenger’s most admired transfer targets but the striker was reluctant to move in the summer.

But Ozil’s arrival sent a clear message of Arsenal’s intent and the Premier League leaders also maintained good relations with Real Madrid when they signed Ozil.

The issue could be whether Real Madrid would sell in January or would want to wait until the summer when they are likely to move for another of Arsenal’s targets of last summer, Luis Suarez.

Arsenal have also been watching developments on Juventus striker Fernando Llorente – who was at last night’s tennis at the O2 arena alongside several Arsenal players – but the Spaniard is now playing more regularly.

Llorente was keen on a move to Arsenal in January when he was not holding down a place at Juve because it is World Cup year but his situation has now improved.

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