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Spurs mustn’t let French midfielder join Arsenal without a fight

| 28.08.2014

Paris St-Germain’s teenage midfielder Adrien Rabiot is reportedly in London with his agent/mum, in order to thrash out terms with Arsenal ahead of an £11m move.

The France Under-21 international, who already has two Ligue 1 winners’ medals to his name at the tender age of 19, effectively went on strike at the Parc des Princes this week by skipping training twice, according to respected French news source L’Equipe.

Such petulance hasn’t stopped the Gunners’ rumoured interest, nor links with Chelsea, Juventus, AC Milan and Roma.

Arsenal are 8/1 to win the Premier League for the first time in over a decade this term, but the general consensus is that they are somewhat short in central midfield, with Real Madrid’s Sami Khedira and Sporting Lisbon’s William Carvalho widely trailed as potential targets.

A Rabiot move to the Emirates is now thought to be some way down the line, but north London neighbours Tottenham and new boss Mauricio Pochettino are also admirers of the much-travelled youngster, who spent some time at Manchester City during his adolescence.

The surprise Premier League pacesetters are still expected to move for Southampton’s Morgan Schneiderlin before Monday night’s deadline, but the omission of Sandro and Mousa Dembele from both of Spurs’ top-flight matches so far suggests the Argentine is still unhappy with his White Hart Lane lot.

Gazumping their closest rivals would serve notice of the Lilywhites’ renewed ambition under Pochettino, who has resisted making wholesale changes to the squad he inherited from former interim coach Tim Sherwood.

Centre-halves Eric Dier and Federico Fazio have been added alongside ex-Swansea left-back Ben Davies, whose former teammate Michel Vorm followed the Welsh international to the capital, but a box-to-box midfielder of Rabiot’s calibre has not yet been acquired.

Rabiot scored twice, laid on 12 key passes and averaged two defensive actions per league fixture last season, but wants out of Laurent Blanc’s squad after starting just 12 Ligue 1 matches in 2013/14.

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Alex Fortune