By Gabriel Agbonlahor

24th Jun, 2022 | 8:28am

Tottenham forcing Arsenal into 'panic' Raphinha signing after new update - pundit

Gabby Agbonlahor has claimed Arsenal are “panicking” as they step up their efforts to sign Raphinha from Leeds United.

Speaking exclusively to Football Insider, Aston Villa’s record Premier League goalscorer claimed Arsenal have seen Tottenham “making moves” and know they need more firepower to compete in 2022-23 season.

The Athletic reported on Wednesday (22 June) that Leeds have rejected an offer from the Gunners for Raphinha.

It is claimed that the club remain very keen on the 25-year-old and there is a strong link between sporting director Edu and the player’s agent Deco.

Tottenham are also interested in his signature but he is not the first choice as they look to bolster their attacking options.

They have already added Ivan Perisic, Fraser Forster and Yves Bissouma this summer after finishing ahead of their north London rivals in the 2021-22 to qualify for the Champions League.

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And Agbonlahor has claimed that has prompted Arsenal to act in the transfer market.

He told Football Insider correspondent Connor Whitley: “Arsenal are panicking a bit as well.

“They know that Spurs are making moves with Bissouma, they know that they need to get someone big in. They know that gap to top four is lengthening.

“They know they need to bring in Gabriel Jesus and Raphinha. That team needs help.

“Losing [Alexandre] Lacazette, that’s a striker. [Pierre-Emerick] Aubameyang’s gone. They need more firepower, they can’t rely on youngsters.”

Raphinha scored 11 times and provided three assists in 35 Premier League games for Leeds in 2021-22.

He has two years left on his contract at Elland Road and is not expected to sign a new deal.

In other news, a club are close to signing an Arsenal 22-year-old for a seven-figure fee.