Brighton & Hove Albion midfielder Yves Bissouma continues to be linked with a summer move to Arsenal.
The Mali international has also been linked with Manchester United and Liverpool, but it would appear that the Gunners are leading the race for his signature.
That is according to the Daily Star, who claim that Arsenal are ‘confident’ of signing Bissouma in a £30m deal when the transfer window opens at the end of the season.
Back in January, football.london reported that Bissouma is a player the north London outfit are keen on and that he would be open to the idea of joining the club if the opportunity arose.
However, should the Gunners manage to sign Bissouma in the summer, they face losing him at some point in 2022.
This is because next year’s Africa Cup of Nations tournament has already moved back to its winter slot.
The tournament was moved to the summer months following a decision by their executive committee in 2017, but after just one competition, it will now return to its original January-February format.
One of the reasons for the change is the temperature and weather both being more favourable in the opening two months of the year.
“We have reviewed the period of the competition as requested by the Cameroonian party due to unfavourable climatic conditions during the period initially slated,” Caf’s deputy general secretary Tony Baffoe read from a statement.
“After listening to the various arguments and viewpoints, and in particular from the Cameroonian meteorological authorities, the coaches and players; the representatives of the Afcon organising committee, which received the mandate from Caf Executive Committee to take the decision, has granted this request.”
This is something for Arsenal to keep in mind if Edu manages to seal a deal for Bissouma to partner Thomas Partey in Mikel Arteta’s dream midfield for the 2021/22 season.
The Africa Cup of Nations was scheduled to have taken place at the beginning of 2021, but due to the coronavirus pandemic that has affected all sport since last March, it was moved to 2022.
Mali have already booked their ticket for the tournament in Cameroon, which means, if named in the final 23-man squad, Bissouma will miss club action for a period between January and February next year.