Arsenal Identifies Alexis Sanchez Replacement As Manchester City Prepares New £30 Million Bid

Arsenal have lined up Thomas Lemar as a replacement for Alexis Sanchez as Manchester City prepare a renewed bid for the wantaway forward.

Sanchez is expected to leave the Emirates Stadium in January, as otherwise Arsenal would have to watch him leave the club for free in the summer, with his contract set to expire.

The Etihad Stadium is believed to be the destination for Sanchez, the 29-year-old forward, after Pep Guardiola's team attempted to sign him in the summer.

City are preparing a fresh bid in the region of £30 million, according to the Guardian, which Arsenal is likely to consider—although they are said to be holding out for a player exchange as part of the deal.

Arsene Wenger's team, meanwhile, has been preparing for life without Sanchez by finding potential replacements that would be available in January.

They will, according to the Daily Mirror, return to the south of France by trying to sign Lemar from Monaco. However, the French Ligue 1 champions are holding out for a fee in the region of £90 million.

Arsenal reportedly made an attempt to sign Lemar, the 22-year-old French midfielder, at the end of the summer transfer window while they considered selling Sanchez to City, but their offer was rejected.

Monaco allowed a majority of his squad to leave last summer, including Tiemoue Bakayoko to Chelsea, Bernardo Silva and Benjamin Mendy to Manchester City, Kylian Mbappe to Paris Saint Germain.

Arsene Wenger
Arsene Wenger, right, at City Ground, Nottingham, England, January 7. Wenger is reportedly preparing for life without Alexis Sanchez. Shaun Botterill/Getty

Now it seems that Monaco manager Leonardo Jardim may be willing to let him go. According to L'Equipe, Jardim has not ruled out, allowing him to leave during the January transfer window.

Arsenal invested in the transfer market in the summer, paying a club-record £46.5 million for Alexandre Lacazette and bringing left-back Sead Kolasinac to the Emirates Stadium for free.

They may, however, face competition for the signature of Lemar, as both Liverpool and Chelsea have reportedly shown an interest in the left-sided midfielder. Jurgen Klopp has a Philippe Coutinho-sized hole in his team after the Brazilian signed for Barcelona on Monday (January 8) and also £142 million to spend.

Antonio Conte is keen for Chelsea to invest this month but the club have already brought in English midfielder Ross Barkley. Conte would rather see Chelsea sign a striker as back-up to Alvaro Morata.

The transfer window is open until January 31.