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Arsenal turn to Benzema after giving up on Suarez

| 22.08.2013

After more or less securing their passage to the Champions League group stages with a 3-0 win at Fenerbahce in the first leg of their play-off tie, Arsenal could be finally ready to splash the cash.

The Gunners are 25/1 to win the Champions League, but their loss to Aston Villa on the opening day of the Premier League demonstrates the need for reinforcements.

Karim Benzema is the most high profile name being linked with the club, who have given up their pursuit of Liverpool striker Luis Suarez, and Arsenal could make a £40m bid for the Real Madrid striker.

Arsene Wenger is keen to bring in a top class striker, and even has the somewhat surprising blessing of Olivier Giroud to sign a new forward.

Giroud has started the season well, with two goals in two matches building on his impressive pre-season, and the Frenchman is 33/1 to be the Premier League top scorer.

However he might be less than delighted to see his compatriot Benzema turn up at the Emirates, as the Real Madrid striker is a similar type of player, and has kept him out of the France team in the past.

The pair have not clicked when picked together for the national team, and Giroud’s support for a new addition was perhaps limited to players like Suarez and Wayne Rooney who could partner him, rather than replace him.

Real Madrid might soon be in need of cash if their world record move for Gareth Bale goes through, but it would still be surprising if they sold Benzema after also allowing Gonzalo Higuain leave this summer.

Cristiano Ronaldo can play as a central striker, and Carlo Ancelotti also has the promising Alvaro Morata to call on, but it would be a strange decision to sell Benzema, who started his campaign with a goal against Real Betis.

All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing

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Alex Fortune