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Arsenal get big transfer boost with £68m star now available for £43m – report

Arsenal have been handed the opportunity to sign Sporting Lisbon centre-back Ousmane Diomande for a discounted price, according to Correio da Manha.

The Gunners are long-term admirers of the Ivory Coast international. They initially wanted to sign him from Norwegian club FC Midtjylland in January 2023.

Sporting beat them to his signature for €8.5 million (£7.2m). Arsenal made a €35m (£30m) offer for him last summer, but the Portuguese club rejected the proposal.

Arsenal have not made a renewed bid for the 20-year-old, but Correio da Manha (page 11) claim their chase could gain more strength with Sporting’s decision to lower the asking price.

The Portuguese champions were previously holding out for his £68m release clause but are now prepared to accept £43m to part ways with the highly-rated defender.

Arsenal could make a fresh move for Diomande

Diomande started last season brilliantly with Sporting, but his performances dipped towards the end of the campaign.

This could be a possible reason behind Sporting’s change of stance. The Portuguese outfit must balance their books by June 30 and are looking for a big-money sale.

It is unclear whether Arsenal will make a fresh proposal for him. Arsenal currently have William Saliba and Gabriel Magalhaes as assured starters in central defence.

Jurrien Timber, Jakub Kiwior, Ben White and Takehiro Tomiyasu can also operate in the heart of the backline.

The club are well equipped at centre-back, and a deal for Diomande could depend on a potential exit.

Kiwior is the only player likely to be sold. Arteta could prioritise a like-for-like replacement – a left-footed centre-back instead of a right-footed option.

On that basis, the club could concentrate on signing Ajax’s Jorrel Hato instead of Diomande. The 18-year-old would be a better choice as he can also play left-back.

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