Arsenal tempted by Bilbao midfielder Martinez

The Daily Telegraph has reported that Athletic Bilbao midfielder Javi Martinez has been watched by scouts from Arsenal as Arsene Wenger continues to search for additions to the Gunners squad for next season.

Yann M’Vila has been a name consistently mentioned in connection with a move to the Emirates Stadium but the newspaper notes that competition for the France international could drive the price tag past what Wenger is prepared to pay. The Telegraph suggests Martinez would be “a more realistic option” as Wenger looks to add greater defensive strength to a midfielder that is largely dominated by attack-minded playmakers.

Alex Song aside, Wenger can call on the likes of Tomas Rosicky, Mikel Arteta, Aaron Ramsey and Jack Wilshere, each a forward-thinking creative type, leaving Song alone to do the defensive legwork. The Telegraph adds that the signing of Martinez, M’Vila or any other defensive midfielder would not be instead of Song but rather in addition to the Cameroon international, who is likely to be offered an improved deal.

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