Arsenal look for Van Persie replacement

Benfica's Rodrigo Machado celebrates his second goal against Nacional during their Portuguese Premier League soccer match at Luz stadium in Lisbon on Saturday. (REUTERS)

Arsenal are eyeing Spain Under-21 striker Rodrigo as a back-up for captain Robin van Persie.

With Van Persie out of contract at the end of next season and attracting interest from Manchester City, Real Madrid and Barcelona, Arsenal are scouring the market for alternatives. 

Left-footed Rodrigo has a £18 million escape clause in his contract and is considered a potential replacement for the Dutch internationa, according to the Daily Mail.

But Emirates face a battle with Inter Milan to prise him away from Benfica.

Van Persie has been in prolific form this season and is the leading Premier League goal scorer with 22.

Meawhile, Arsene Wenger is planning a raid on Ipswich Town's youth team forward Carel Tofiak.

The Frenchman scouted Tofiak - who is happy playing on the wing or up front - during a recent game for Town's Under 18s.

Born in Cameroon, but eligible to play for the Republic of Ireland, the 17-year-old has been raising interest from a number of clubs this season.
 

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