Arsenal battle Europe’s elite for 6ft tall star in January

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Arsenal are facing a transfer battle with some of Europe’s top clubs for Celtic starlet Karamoko Dembele.

Juventus and Paris Saint-Germain have both already been with the 16-year-old wonder-kid and now Borussia Dortmund are thought to have joined the chase.

Dembele made his debut for Celtic at the end of last season having been handed his first pro contract until 2021.

The teenager made headlines when he broke into the Hoops Under-20 team aged just 13, with videos of his performances going viral.

He has yet to play for Neil Lennon’s team this season but is very highly rated at the club.

Arsenal have reportedly declared their interest in Dembele and feel they could lead the chase after doing business with Celtic this summer to sign left-back Kieran Tierney.

But German publication Bild report that Borussia Dortmund have also joined the race to sign the talented winger.

Dortmund have a track record of identifying talented young players and signing them up before their value soars.

That was the case with Jadon Sancho, with the Bundesliga club now valuing the 19-year-old England ace at £100m after snapping him up from Manchester City two years ago.

Arsenal could also hold a key advantage though by offering him the chance to move to back to London, the city where he was born.

Dembele, whose parents were born in the Ivory Coast, moved to Glasgow with his family when he was just a one-year-old.

Barcelona are believed to have turned down the chance to sign Dembele four years ago because they feared it would land them in hot water with FIFA.

The Spanish club were ready to make their move after convincing the player his future lay away from Scotland.

But they pulled the plug amid fears FIFA would hammer them for signing an under-age player.

Dembele is eligible to play for Scotland and England at senior level, as well as Ivory Coast.

His older brother Siriki plays for League One club Peterborough.


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