Alexandre Lacazette has been ruled out until October due to an ankle injury, Arsenal have announced.

Lacazette has hit two Premier League goals this term but will sit out Sunday's trip to Watford.

He will also be sidelined when Arsenal get their Europa League campaign up and running away to Eintracht Frankfurt next week.

Arsenal indicated Lacazette has been playing through pain in his left ankle but is "likely" to return next month.

"After assessments to an ongoing ankle issue, we have advised that Alex will need to rest and strengthen his ankle to regain full fitness," said a club medical statement.

"Alex has been playing through this injury for several weeks."

Matches set to be missed by Lacazette include a trip to Manchester United in the Premier League on September 30.

Dani Ceballos has admitted to being left in awe of Liverpool's high-pressing prowess following Arsenal's suffocating 3-1 defeat at Anfield in August.

Mohamed Salah scored twice and Joel Matip once when the Gunners, previously unbeaten, travelled to Merseyside for their third match of the new Premier League season.

Spain international Ceballos lasted only an hour but the European champions made a big impression on the midfielder, who is on loan at Arsenal from Real Madrid.

"I've never seen anything like what I saw at Anfield," Ceballos told the Guardian.

"I haven't seen a team that plays better, that presses like them, the way the fans carry them along.

“They take the air from you. You spend so much time defending and when you want to do something with the ball, when you want to breathe, they're back on top of you. They're very well-drilled."

Ceballos was dropped to the bench for Arsenal's next match, the 2-2 draw against Tottenham, but sliding out of the starting XI did nothing to dent his enthusiasm for life in north London.

"I love the city, I love the Premier League and love Arsenal," he said.

"I'm just really, really happy to be part of this great club. I've hardly noticed any difference in size between Real Madrid and Arsenal. And the fans are very passionate, they love the players."

Ceballos believes Arsenal's front three can propel them to success, saluting the "direct" qualities of Nicolas Pepe and describing Alexandre Lacazette as "the best player".

"You can compare [Pierre-Emerick] Aubameyang to Cristiano [Ronaldo] when he was at Madrid in the sense that he plays close to the goal, he lives for scoring," Ceballos added.

Christian Eriksen – the name that will not go away, even with the transfer window closed.

Eriksen wanted to leave Tottenham for a new challenge as Real Madrid, Atletico Madrid, Juventus and Inter reportedly circled.

A move did not materialise, much to his disappointment, but a transfer could be on the horizon.

 

TOP STORY – MADRID LOOK TO ERIKSEN AMID POGBA DOUBTS

Sky Sports News claims Real Madrid will make a move for Tottenham star Christian Eriksen at the end of the season if Paul Pogba extends his Manchester United deal.

Zinedine Zidane has made no secret of his desire to reinforce his midfield, with Tottenham's Eriksen, Pogba and Ajax sensation Donny van de Beek linked to the Santiago Bernabeu.

While Los Blancos remain keen on Pogba, they are eyeing a move for Eriksen – whose contract expires at the end of the campaign.

 

ROUND-UP:

- According to Tuttosport, Paris Saint-Germain and Tottenham are set to go head-to-head for Juventus attacker Paulo Dybala in January. Both clubs were reportedly interested in signing Dybala prior to the transfer deadline, and with Dybala set to struggle for regular game time PSG and Spurs are poised to fight it out.

- Manchester United goalkeeper David de Gea is close to finally signing a new £290,000-a-week contract at Old Trafford, claims The Guardian.

Inter are keeping tabs on Borussia Dortmund attacker Mario Gotze, says Welt. Gotze is out of contract at the end of the season and negotiations over a new deal are reportedly not progressing.

- The Serie A side, meanwhile, will not sell star defender Milan Skriniar in January. That is according to Tuttosport amid growing speculation Manchester City are targeting the Inter centre-back.

- According to Sky Sports News, Wolves are still interested in signing AC Milan midfielder Franck Kessie. Wolves tried to prise Kessie from Milan before the transfer window shut, but the 22-year-old knocked back the move.

Arsenal could make another attempt to sign Belgium international Yannick Carrasco from Chinese Super League side Dalian Yifang, reports The Sun. The Gunners have long been linked with Carrasco and Dalian's supposed interest in Napoli star Dries Mertens could make a deal possible.

Samuel Umtiti laughed off rumours raising him as a makeweight in a potential Barcelona deal for Neymar as he rejected reports linking him to Arsenal.

The France international's future at Camp Nou came into question following an injury hit 2018-19 season in which he managed 14 LaLiga appearances.

With Gerard Pique and Clement Lenglet established at centre-back, Barca reportedly considered bundling 25-year-old Umtiti into negotiations for former player and Paris Saint-Germain star Neymar.

The purported offer would also have seen at least two of Philippe Coutinho, now at Bayern Munich on a season-long loan, Ousmane Dembele and Ivan Rakitic head to Parc des Princes.

"Me? Currency in an exchange? It's crazy," Umtiti told Canal+.

"That made me laugh. I do not even have an answer to that."

The transfer window ended on September 2 with Neymar and Umtiti still at their respective clubs following months of speculation.

Arsenal and Manchester United, along with PSG, were mentioned as alternative destinations for the defender had he been eager to explore his options after three seasons at Barca.

Umtiti denied ever being interested in a move elsewhere, claiming the Arsenal link came as a surprise.

"I do not know where this rumour came from," the World Cup winner said.

"Overnight I started receiving messages from my friends... but sorry, for me Barcelona is Barcelona.

"I had discussions with my agent to tell him that whatever was happening he did not even need to talk to me about it.

"My goal since I was a kid was to play for Barcelona. I came here to last and to win titles."

Umtiti left France's camp over the weekend after suffering a foot injury prior to the Euro 2020 qualifying victory over Albania.

It is the latest in a series of setbacks which led him to Qatar in November in search of a solution to ongoing knee discomfort.

"I really forced my knee during the World Cup," he admitted. "But I'm world champion. In life you have to make choices and I do not regret that choice."

Robert Moreno wants Dani Ceballos to seize his chance at Arsenal and show he can be a midfield mainstay for Spain.

The loan recruit from Real Madrid is in the early weeks of a season in London that could prove pivotal for his career.

Former Real Betis playmaker Ceballos spent two years at the Santiago Bernabeu without fully establishing himself as a regular starter, although in that time he broke into the senior international squad.

Ceballos has six caps to date and could add to that tally in the Euro 2020 qualifiers against Romania on Thursday and Faroe Islands on Sunday.

But it is club consistency that Spain coach Moreno has challenged Ceballos to produce.

"What I want is for him to play, the important thing is that the players have minutes," he said.

Speaking at a news conference on Tuesday, Moreno was reluctant to talk about Ceballos and his Real Madrid prospects.

"I'm not going to get into Madrid because [coach Zinedine] Zidane is the one who decides there," said Moreno.

"I want him to play many minutes now at Arsenal."

Moreno is also hoping for great things from Pablo Sarabia, who swapped Sevilla for Paris Saint-Germain in July.

Sarabia showed stirring form in LaLiga last term to earn his move to the French champions and at the age of 27 a first Spain cap could come his way.

"I think that Sarabia is a player that, having seen him in the position where he performed at Sevilla and PSG, can add many things because he is a forward with the spirit of a midfielder," said Moreno.

"He can create between the lines and make assists. He also scores goals. When you don't have a forward that scores 80 goals you need five that score 15 goals each.

"That is what we look for from our forwards, not only to add to the game but to score goals. That is the ideal scenario. Pablo did great in Sevilla last year. He is also performing well in PSG.

"He has the profile that we like for the style of game that we will try to impose. He is one player more for us now, hopefully he will be lucky enough to make his debut in the next games."

Roma have signed Arsenal playmaker Henrikh Mkhitaryan on loan, while the Serie A side have also lured Nikola Kalinic from Atletico Madrid.

Arsenal will receive a loan fee of €3 million, with a further €100,000 subject to specific performance targets being met.

Neither club has declared that there is an option to make Mkhitaryan's transfer permanent.

"It's a great opportunity for me to begin a new chapter, with a great club," the Armenia international told Roma's official website.

"I know what this club is all about and I am sure we can achieve great things together."

Roma loaned Chris Smalling from Manchester United and the Italian capital club raided the Premier League again for Mkhitaryan, who was part of the blockbuster deal that saw Alexis Sanchez swap Arsenal for United in January 2018.

The 30-year-old Armenian scored six goals in 39 appearances across all competitions last season.

Mkhitaryan, however, has been unable to cement his place in Unai Emery's starting XI, managing 88 minutes of Premier League action this term.

Roma have also completed the loan signing of former Croatia striker Kalinic, who previously played for Fiorentina and AC Milan.

Kalinic moved to Atletico in 2018 following a disappointing spell at Milan but the 31-year-old has struggled to make an impact in Madrid, where he managed only two LaLiga goals.

He arrives in Rome as a replacement for Patrik Schick, who has joined Bundesliga outfit RB Leipzig on an initial one-season loan.

There is a purchase option of €9m included in the Kalinic deal, with Atleti receiving an initial €2m for the loan.

"It feels great, because I am joining a big club," he said.

"I am proud to become part of this team and this club. Roma has big history and I am very happy to be here."

Arsenal midfielder Matteo Guendouzi has won his first senior call-up for France after Paul Pogba withdrew from the squad to face Albania and Andorra due to a sprained ankle.

Pogba has completed 90 minutes in each of Manchester United's Premier League games so far this season, including Saturday's 1-1 draw at Southampton.

Guendouzi has been similarly central to head coach Unai Emery's plans at Arsenal and impressed during Sunday's north London derby – supplying a superb floated pass for Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang to seal a 2-2 draw for the Gunners.

Overall, his numbers during the opening weeks of the campaign have been highly impressive, with the former Lorient man's nine interceptions, five tackles won and 43 kilometres covered the most for any Arsenal player, according to data collected by Opta.

Guendouzi's 19 recoveries and 46 duels put him second in those categories.

The 20-year-old featured three times for France's Under-21 team at this year's European Championship in Italy.

Didier Deschamps' need for midfield reinforcements was underlined by Lyon's Houssem Aouar withdrawing due to an adductor problem, with another replacement to be announced in due course.

Real Madrid look set to finally land a midfielder before the transfer window closes.

The LaLiga giants have been linked to numerous midfielders and, after a slow start to the season, they may make a signing ahead of the window shutting on Monday.

Madrid are reportedly close to strengthening their squad by completing a move for Sporting CP star Bruno Fernandes.

 

TOP STORY – REAL MADRID CLOSE TO SEALING FERNANDES DEAL

Real Madrid have almost completed a deal for Fernandes, according to ESPN.

The Portugal international, 24, was linked to Manchester United and Tottenham earlier in the window.

Now, the Sporting captain looks set for Madrid, who have reportedly targeted United's Paul Pogba, Spurs' Christian Eriksen and Ajax's Donny van de Beek during the close season.

It comes just days after Fiorentina sporting director Daniele Prade said Fernandes was heading to Madrid for €70million.

 

ROUND-UP

- The Neymar saga will finally end – for now – with the Paris Saint-Germain star staying with the Ligue 1 champions. L'Equipe reports the Brazil international will remain with PSG, while Sport reports Barcelona will resume their pursuit of Neymar in 2020.

- That could mean a few more eyes on Mauro Icardi on Monday. PSG are in talks with Inter over a potential loan deal for the forward, according to RMC Sport and Gianluca Di Marzio.

- Pogba may still be hoping to eventually get his move to Real Madrid. The Mirror reports the France international will resist signing a new deal with Premier League giants Manchester United, with his current contract running until 2021, although the club have an option to extend that by a year.

- Javier Hernandez should get a deadline-day move from West Ham. The Premier League club have agreed to sell the forward to Sevilla for close to €8.9m (£8m), according to Sky Sports News.

- Henrikh Mkhitaryan came off the bench during Arsenal's draw against Tottenham on Sunday and he could be on his way out of the Emirates Stadium a day later. Roma are pressing hard to sign the midfielder on loan with an option to buy, according to Gianluca Di Marzio.

- Phil Foden may have to wait for his chances at Manchester City, but the Premier League champions are keen to keep the teenage midfielder in their squad. The Sun reports City rejected loan bids from Rangers and Roma for the England youth international.

Liverpool set a new club record on Saturday, beating Burnley 3-0 to record a 13th consecutive top-flight victory.

Jurgen Klopp's men finished the 2018-19 campaign with nine straight Premier League wins and have taken maximum points from their first four games of this season.

As a result, they have surpassed the 12-game winning run previously achieved under Kenny Dalglish in 1990.

How does Liverpool's ongoing winning streak compare to the record runs of the rest of the Premier League's 'big six'? With the help of Opta, we take a look...

 

Manchester City: 18 wins in a row

Liverpool would need to win each of their next five Premier League matches - against Newcastle United, Chelsea, Sheffield United, Leicester City and bitter rivals Manchester United - to equal the 18-game streak City put together from August to December two years ago.

Pep Guardiola's side needed a 97th-minute strike from Raheem Sterling to beat Bournemouth in the first game of that run, which featured 5-0 wins over Liverpool and Crystal Palace, a 6-0 triumph at Watford and a 7-2 mauling of Stoke City.

It was Palace who eventually brought an end to City's stunning string of wins, earning a 0-0 draw at Selhurst Park that could have been even better, with Ederson saving an injury-time penalty from Luka Milivojevic.

City subsequently won 14 matches in a row to pip Liverpool to last season's title and also claimed victory in their first game of 2019-20 before drawing 2-2 with Tottenham in a match they dominated.


Arsenal: 14 wins in a row

Arsenal's 'Invincibles' famously completed an unbeaten Premier League season in 2003-04, but the Gunners' longest winning streak in the competition did not come in that campaign.

Their best run of 14 straight wins was achieved in 2002, when a team spearheaded by Thierry Henry secured a league and FA Cup double.

A 2-0 win over Birmingham City in August saw Arsene Wenger's magnificent side set a new benchmark for consecutive top-flight wins, at least until City's recent dominance.


Liverpool, Chelsea and Tottenham: 13 wins in a row

In winning 13 successive games, Liverpool have drawn level with the best runs of Chelsea and Tottenham.

The Reds' current streak began against Burnley in March and stretched to 13 matches with Saturday's 3-0 win over the same opponents.

Chelsea recorded 13 wins in a row from October to December in 2016 and went on to be crowned champions the following May.

You have to go way back to 1960 for Tottenham's longest winning runs in the top-flight, which was achieved under Bill Nicholson in another season that ended with the league trophy being lifted.


Manchester United - 12 wins in a row

Somewhat surprisingly given their years of sustained success under Alex Ferguson, United sit bottom of this particular list.

They have never won more than 12 league games in a row, reaching that mark in August 2000 - three months after winning the Premier League yet again.

Indeed, the longest winning runs of United, City, Arsenal, Chelsea and Tottenham have all come, at least in part, during title-winning campaigns.

After coming so close to glory last term, Liverpool will hope they follow suit next May.

Arsenal midfielder Mohamed Elneny has joined Turkish club Besiktas on a season-long loan deal.

The Egypt international has not played a competitive match for the Gunners this season and made just eight Premier League appearances in the previous campaign. 

Arsenal head coach Unai Emery strengthened his midfield options with the signing of Dani Ceballos on loan from Real Madrid in July, so has allowed Elneny to move to the Turkish Super Lig to get more game time.

Elneny was signed by former Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger from Swiss side Basel in January 2016.

The 27-year-old signed a long-term contract with the Gunners in March 2018, with that deal reportedly running to 2022.

Nacho Monreal has left Arsenal after more than six seasons and signed a two-year deal with Real Sociedad.

The 33-year-old started each of the Premier League side's opening three fixtures but Unai Emery admitted his departure was possible following last weekend's 3-1 loss to Liverpool.

An experienced and versatile defender, Monreal moved to north London from Malaga in January 2013 and made 250 appearances in all competitions, scoring 10 goals.

Neither club has confirmed the transfer fee involved.

"We would like to thank Nacho for his contribution to the club and everyone at Arsenal wishes him the best for his future," read a statement from the Gunners.

"The transfer is subject to the completion of regulatory processes."

Monreal's days at Arsenal appeared numbered when the younger Kieran Tierney, a left-sided defender of similar profile, arrived from Celtic on deadline day.

Head coach Emery further strengthened his options at the back by signing David Luiz and William Saliba, who is spending the season on loan at Saint-Etienne.

The Spain international is due to be presented by Sociedad on Monday and could debut in front of his new fans when Imanol Alguacil's men host Atletico Madrid after the international break.

Atletico Madrid have been busy during the transfer window and they may be aiming to land another star attacker.

It appears the LaLiga giants, who have gone through a rebuild, are targeting unwanted Inter forward Mauro Icardi.

With Joao Felix having made an impressive start in Madrid, Atletico may strengthen yet again before the transfer window shuts on Monday.

 

TOP STORY – ATLETICO LOOK TO SIGN ICARDI ON LOAN

Atletico Madrid are negotiating a deal to sign Icardi on loan from Inter, according to ESPN FC.

The report says the deal for Icardi, who has been linked with Juventus and Napoli, would include an option to buy for €70million.

The Argentina international has been heavily linked with a move away from San Siro and doesn't appear to fit into the plans of new coach Antonio Conte.


ROUND-UP

- There is still plenty to play out on the Neymar front. Paris Saint-Germain still want Ousmane Dembele as part of any deal with Barcelona, according to RAC1. Meanwhile, Sport report Neymar is still optimistic and confident of a return to Camp Nou.

- Fernando Llorente has made a decision on his future. AS and Sport report the striker, who has been a free agent since leaving Tottenham, has agreed a deal to sign with Napoli.

- Giorgio Chiellini's knee injury could lead to some late movement from Juventus. The Serie A champions are interested in Barcelona defender Samuel Umtiti, according to Sport.

- AC Milan are looking to bolster their attack before the window closes. Gianluca Di Marzio reports the Serie A side are considering two options – Atletico Madrid's Angel Correa or Gremio's Everton – before the window shuts.

- The moves look set to continue at Manchester United. The Sun reports Matteo Darmian is set to join Parma in a €1.6m (£1.4m) deal, ending his four-season stay at Old Trafford.

Maybe, just maybe, the Neymar transfer saga is coming to an end.

The Brazilian's future has dominated the headlines over recent weeks as Barcelona try to re-sign the wantaway Paris Saint-Germain superstar.

With the September 2 deadline looming, Barca may have struck a deal…

 

TOP STORY – BARCA AND PSG REACH NEYMAR AGREEMENT

According to BBC Sport, Barcelona and Paris Saint-Germain have agreed terms on the value of Neymar.

The two clubs have reportedly settled on a figure of €200million for a player who left Camp Nou in a world-record €222m deal in 2017.

The LaLiga champions are also willing to offer Jean-Clair Todibo, Ivan Rakitic and Ousmane Dembele on a season-long loan, though all three players still have to agree terms.

 

ROUND-UP

- According to Gianluca di Marzio, Atletico Madrid have made an enquiry for Inter outcast Mauro Icardi. However, the race seems to be between Napoli and Monaco, who are both reportedly prepared to pay €65million for the former Inter captain.

- A swap deal involving Keylor Navas and Alphonse Areola is close to completion. RMC says Paris Saint-Germain goalkeeper Areola has reached an agreement with Real Madrid. Marca, meanwhile, says Navas will sign a three-year deal with PSG.

Parma are confident of signing Manchester United full-back Matteo Darmian, says Alfredo Pedulla. Former Torino defender Darmian has been virtually non-existent at Old Trafford in recent months.

- Radio Marte reporter Dario Sarnataro claims Chelsea have offered Michy Batshuayi to Napoli. The 25-year-old striker has recently spent time on loan at Borussia Dortmund, Valencia and Crystal Palace.

- Manchester United defender Chris Smalling is on the verge of moving to Roma on loan, according to widespread reports in Italy and England.

- Arsenal midfielder Mohamed Elneny is set to join Besiktas on a season-long loan, says Goal.com. The Egypt international only made 17 appearances last season. Il Messaggero, meanwhile, claims the Gunners and Tottenham are both monitoring Roma star Cengiz Under.

Unai Emery has hinted more players will leave Arsenal before the European transfer window closes but has ruled out an exit for Mesut Ozil.

Ozil has battled injury and inconsistency since Emery took over from Arsene Wenger last year, starting just 20 of Arsenal's 38 Premier League matches in 2018-19.

The midfielder has yet to feature this season since being involved in an apparent attempted carjacking last month along with team-mate Sead Kolasinac. 

He was absent for last weekend's 3-1 loss to Liverpool, despite returning to training, but Emery has opened the door for his comeback against Tottenham on Sunday.

"This week he's training well and progressing physically better," Emery said at Thursday's news conference. "He's going to be closer to us and available for Sunday, I think."

Many major teams outside England have until Monday to complete their latest transfer business and Ozil is one of a number of Arsenal players to have been linked with a move away.

Emery is not considering selling Ozil, but Nacho Monreal could be on his way to Real Sociedad.

"We cannot sign another player, but we have [for] some players the possibility to leave in the next four days," he said. "The club is working. Some players know their situation, but my focus is on the match on Sunday.

"We are not speaking about the possibility for Mesut to leave. Monreal? Yes, he's one possibility."

Arsenal are still without defenders Rob Holding, Kieran Tierney and Hector Bellerin for this weekend's visit of Tottenham, but all three players are closing in on a first-team return.

"Holding is training with us, playing with the Under-23 side but is not 100 per cent to play on Sunday," Emery said. 

"With the other two, we have to be calm but, also, we have to be demanding with their recovery, because we need them. 

"The international break is going to give us two weeks to test them better than before, because now my focus with the team is the players that will be available on Sunday and to prepare with them."

Defending EFL Cup champions Manchester City have been drawn away to Preston North End in the third round, while Manchester United will host Rochdale.

Last season's beaten finalists Chelsea got a home tie against either Grimsby Town or Macclesfield Town, while Champions League winners Liverpool will go to MK Dons.

Tottenham face a trip to Colchester United and their north London rivals Arsenal are at home to Nottingham Forest.

Portsmouth will welcome rivals Southampton to Fratton Park for a south coast derby, with matches to be played in the week commencing September 23.

Sunderland produced the biggest shock of Wednesday's second-round action, dumping out Premier League side Burnley 3-1 at Turf Moor despite falling behind to Jay Rodriguez's first goal since re-joining the Clarets.

Will Grigg equalised for the Black Cats before Tom Flanagan and George Dobson struck in the first five minutes of the second half to complete the comeback for Jack Ross' unbeaten League One side.

Sunderland's reward is another clash with Premier League opposition, having drawn Chris Wilder's newly promoted Sheffield United at Bramall Lane.

Bournemouth go to Burton Albion next after they needed a penalty shoot-out to edge past Forest Green Rovers following a goalless draw at home, while Leicester City – who will head to Luton Town - also triumphed on spot-kicks after a 1-1 draw in an all-Premier League tie at Newcastle United.

Everton fell behind in the first minute away to League One side Lincoln City but triumphed 4-2 to earn a trip to Sheffield Wednesday, who progressed thanks to Atdhe Nuhiu's 96th-minute goal in a 1-0 victory at local rivals Rotherham United.

Portsmouth won 2-0 at QPR and Sam Surridge struck twice as Swansea City thrashed Cambridge United 6-0 to set up a game at Watford.


EFL Cup third round draw in full: 

Wolves v Reading
Oxford United v West Ham
Watford v Swansea City
Brighton and Hove Albion v Aston Villa
Sheffield United v Sunderland
Colchester United v Tottenham
Portsmouth v Southampton
Burton Albion v Bournemouth
Preston North End v Manchester City
MK Dons v Liverpool
Manchester United v Rochdale
Luton Town v Leicester City
Chelsea v Grimsby Town or Macclesfield Town
Sheffield Wednesday v Everton
Arsenal v Nottingham Forest
Crawley v Stoke City

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