Report: Arsenal revive interest in Bayer Leverkusen star Lars Bender

Lars Bender

Arsenal are eyeing a new defensive midfielder to provide competition for Francis Coquelin.

According to a report in The Sun, Arsenal have revived their interest in Bayer Leverkusen’s defensive midfielder Lars Bender.

The Germany international has long been linked with a move to the Gunners and even became the subject of a previous £18.5 million rejected bid, as per the Guardian.

The 26-year-old has once again been impressive this season, starting 25 Bundesliga matches and averaging 2.9 tackles, 3.2 interceptions and 2.6 clearances per league encounter.

With Arsene Wenger keen on providing competition for Francis Coquelin ahead of next season, fresh reports in The Sun claim Bender could be the Frenchman’s ideal solution.

“Arsene Wenger is after Germany’s Lars Bender. The Arsenal boss wants to strengthen in defensive midfield and the £18 million Bayer Leverkusen man is on his radar this summer,” the paper claims.

Would Lars Bender be a good signing for Arsenal?

As well as Francis Coquelin played during the second half of the campaign, Arsenal without doubt need viable defensive midfield competition with suspensions and injuries inevitable.

No other player in the Gunners' squad comes close to the effectiveness Coquelin provides in that role, therefore it would be no surprise to see Wenger target this area as a top priority.

Southampton’s Morgan Schneiderlin is also an option, as per the report, but the Frenchman may come at a big price whereas Bender is arguably the cheaper alternative.

The 19-capped ace has all the tools necessary to succeed in North London, and the chance to join up with fellow Germans Mesut Ozil and Per Mertesacker may help a potential arrival go more smoothly.

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