With the signing of Mohamed Elneny expected to be completed in relatively short order, Arsenal fans have been told by the relatively reliable John Cross of The Mirror not to expect further signings this month. Noises have begun to emerge, however, suggesting that Arsene Wenger may have meant it when he said he would be "busy" this window.
According to a source at The Sun, "[a]n intermediary has made contact with Dortmund about Pierre-Emerick [Aubameyang] making a move to Arsenal," with the Gunners willing to pay £42 million for the Gabon international. Aubameyang has been setting the Bundesliga alight, scoring 24 goals in 23 appearances this season for the BVB this year, and has reportedly told friends he wants to play in the Premier League.
Arsenal would seem to be an excellent fit for Aubameyang, as the Gunners have been short of striking options with Danny Welbeck out injured until later this year and have long been reported to be in the market for another difference-maker at center forward. A signing of his caliber could turn Arsenal from title challengers into title favorites.
The source goes on to say:
Wenger knows the fee is very high — yet this is a striker who can make a massive difference for him and help win the title for the first time in 12 years. But there is a lot of interest in him.
According to retired Norwegian footballer Jan Åge Fjørtoft, who seems to relish having bits and pieces of insider information from clubs in Germany, there may be reason to pause in any early celebration over these reports, beyond just that it's an anonymous report in The Sun.
As reported Arsenal willing to pay "big money" to get Aubameyang. But Dortmund say NO. Building a new team. Not desperate for money— Jan Aage Fjortoft (@JanAageFjortoft) January 3, 2016
Fjortoft is making a lot of sense. Dortmund are resurgent under new manager Thomas Tuchel, currently sitting second in the Bundesliga, only eight points behind leaders Bayern Munich and with a six-point gap on third place Hertha BSC. Tuchel has done well to rebuild the team after Jurgen Klopp's demoralizing final season and has put together a solid league campaign this year. Dortmund have a terrific core of players and don't need to sell, and Aubameyang is under contract with them until 2020. It doesn't make any sense for them to let him go now, even for a big payout.
Could a big enough bid tempt them? Could he want a move badly enough to force his way out? Only time will tell. At this point, it seems like a pipe dream rumor rooted in paper talk, but we'll have more for you when and if we find it.