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January Transfer Window Rumors: Arsenal readying £22m bid for Porto DM Ruben Neves

With Mikel Arteta and Francis Coquelin sidelined, rumors are picking up around an anticipated bid for the young Portuguese DM.

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Both the Mirror and the Sun are reporting Arsenal are set to put up £22m for young FC Porto 18-year old defensive midfielder Ruben Neves in the January transfer window.

Neves, who first cracked the Portuguese national team in October filling in for João Moutinho, has made six league appearances for Porto this season. Perhaps more relevantly, he's cup-tied for the Champions League having featured in each of Porto's group stage matches thus far – and Porto's already through to the knockout stage.

Both reports suggest Real Madrid, Chelsea, Liverpool and West Ham United are also interested. Chelsea and Jose Mourinho were linked as far back as the summer. Barcelona was as well, though Sergi Samper likely makes those rumors unrealistic.

As Mikel Arteta is out for at least a couple of weeks and Francis Coquelin to be sidelined for months, Arsenal are hazardously thin at DM heading into a thicket of six December matches ahead including the final Group Stage match of the Champions league against Olympiakos, Dec. 9.

Neves is currently represented by Portuguese superagent Jorge Mendes who has famously shunned/been shunned by Arsenal manager Arsène Wenger.

Rumor likelihood: 2/10

A Mendes client + cup-tied for a UCL round of 16 team = probably not going to happen.