Tick tock. There isn't much time left now. Arsenal are yet to make a signing this January, despite assurances from Ivan Gazidis that cash was available.
Owner Stan Kroenke has money too, he splashed out £20 million this week, although it wasn't on Arsenal but real estate instead.
Arsenal put in a very impressive performance last night over West Ham, but most fans will be in agreement they do need strengthening if they are to stand a better chance of finishing in the top four.
The rumour mill has continued to turn, with several players linked over the past week. Here are seven, all said to be on Arsene Wenger's radar.
Diame wasn't included in the West Ham starting line-up last night to play at the Emirates, and the Hammers certainly missed their defensive shield. If anything his absence proved how important he is to them, and what he could do for the Gunners. The 25-year-old only signed at Upton Park in the summer on a free, but has a release clause of just £3.5 million written into his contract. It has been reported the Senegalese midfielder is frustrated with the Hammers board trying to block any potential move and may even complain to FIFA, but with over a week left of the window his club will find it tough to hold out. If Arsenal can secure him, they will have a proven Premier League player for a bargain price.
Fiorentina striker Stefan Jovetic is one of Serie A's hottest properties. He began his career as an attacking midfielder, but after a serious knee injury has converted into an out and out striker, and has an impressive strike rate, with eight in 16 games this season, and 14 in 27 last season. Reports in Italy have linked the Gunners with a £20 million bid. However even an offer that substantial for the 23-year-old is unlikely to convince the club to sell. Chelsea and Manchester City are keen admirers of the player, and if Fiorentina did decide to cash in, they would hope to sell for more than £25 million and try to spark a bidding war.
There may be life in this one yet. Despite Barcelona stating publicly earlier this month that Villa was not for sale, it is being widely reported that Arsenal are ready to go back in with a £10 million bid. Spain's record goalscorer is said to be unhappy at no longer being an automatic first choice at the Nou Camp, and is ready for a new challenge. Barcelona are well covered in attack, but would rather hang onto Villa until the summer. However if they can tempt him now, it means they will not be competing with a Pep Guardiola-led Bayern Munich to sign the striker in July.
Barcelona are ready to offload last season's breakthrough star, temporarily at least. The winger is behind Alexis Sanchez, Tello and Pedro in the Nou Camp pecking order, and the club want to allow him to go on loan to get some regular football under his belt. InsideLaLiga claim Arsenal are 'on alert' regarding the development, with the winger a previous target for Arsene Wenger. Cuenca is just 21, and would provide a useful option out wide for the Gunners.
The Express has linked Arsenal with a surprise move for German defender Mats Hummels. The centre-back is a key member of the Borussia Dortmund defence, and would expect to be an instant first choice at the Gunners. The paper report that Arsenal are in negotiations with Dortmund, but from our perspective the idea of Arsenal spending close to £20 million on a centre-back this January appears far-fetched. Hummels recently signed a long-term contract and Dortmund would not be keen to sell the international midway through the season.
Reports in Italy have claimed the Gunners are interested in 21-year-old Brazilian, Jorginho. He isn't a name who will be familiar to most. He plays for Hellas Verona, who sit just outside Italy's top flight, in Serie B. Jorginho has been a key member of their side, playing as a holding defensive midfielder, scoring once. He would be available for around £4 million, and holds an Italian passport so there would be no work permit complications. Arsenal fans may wonder whether he would be able to make the step up to go straight into their team, or simply be a disappointing Denilson Mk II.
Swansea defender Ashley Williams has been winning rave reviews over the past two seasons in the top flight, but he has a special place in Arsenal fans' hearts already. He was the player who kicked a football at Robin van Persie's head from point blank range, prompting United boss Sir Alex Ferguson to rage 'he could have killed him.' The Mirror claim today that Arsenal are keen on signing the 28-year-old Wales captain, but face competition from Liverpool, who hope to use Brendan Rodgers' past management of the player to help them win the race. The bad news for the Gunners is that Williams is unlikely to want to move now, with a Capital One Cup final on the horizon for Swansea, so this is more likely one to watch over the summer.
Which of these seven is most realistic, and who would you most like to see arrive?
image: © oemar