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Josh Kroenke has explained that Edu and Mikel Arteta only want to sign players who are passionate about Arsenal. The American believes that, along with players who are elevated through the youth ranks, combines for a healthy culture at the club.

Techinical director Edu is preparing for a busy summer transfer window, but Kroenke has said that the Brazilian and Arteta have set out a ‘blueprint’ for the type of player they want to sign.

Writing in the matchday programme for Sunday’s clash with Everton, he said: “On a recruitment standpoint I will always defer to Edu and Mikel but I know they have a blueprint of the type of player and specific positions that we need to reinforce heading into the summer, so I’ll defer to them and support them in every way that we can in their pursuit of elevating the quality of the squad and also ensuring that we have the right mentality of player coming in.

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“We only want players who are passionate about Arsenal Football Club.

“Players arrive from other clubs, but are also elevated from our junior ranks, as is very obvious at Arsenal with Bukayo, Emile, and Eddie making such huge contributions this season. The academy has been a really bright spot that receives great focus at our club.”

He added: “When you have a lot of turnover in the squad like we had, you create opportunities for those young players and credit to them as they have really seized the opportunity. When young players taste a bite of the apple at first-team level, they only want another bite and I think that’s a tribute to the players and the staff for their internal hunger. And for as much frustration they feel now, because I know they really want that Champions League opportunity, we are always going to keep trying to pursue it and I think it’s a very exciting thing for our supporters to know that that hunger resides in those young players.”

Arsenal have already agreed to sign Sao Paulo winger Marquinhos for a fee in the region of £3million.

HAVE YOUR SAY – Leave a comment on who you think the Gunners should sign this summer

Arteta’s targets also include a marquee signing in Gabriel Jesus, with the Gunners confident of landing his signature. The Gunners first made enquiries for Jesus in November with Edu maintaining a close relationship with the player’s agent and the City forward himself.

Plus, they are interested in signing Bologna left back Aaron Hickey following his impressive performances in Serie A, football.london understands. Arteta wants a versatile left-sided defender to bolster his defence, with Kieran Tierney currently on the sidelines after undergoing knee surgery, while Takehiro Tomiyasu was forced off injured in the defeat at Newcastle on Monday night, having only recently returned to action following calf issues.

Leicester midfielder Youri Tielemans could also make the move to north London with Arteta needing an experienced central-midfield player.

It’s ultimately bound to be a busy window for the Gunners and a testing one too as they look to provide Arteta with a squad that can look to challenge for trophies over the course of the next few years.



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