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Arsenal intend to splash out on West Ham striker Cole in January

Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger is chasing West Ham United striker Carlton Cole.

The Sunday Mirror says Cole is seen as the ideal man to add strength and physical presence to a forward line that has been left lightweight by the absence through injury of Robin van Persie and Nicklas Bendtner.

And while Danish international Bendtner will be back within weeks, Van Persie will be lucky to play any part in Arsenal's season after a severe ankle injury he suffered while playing for Holland against Italy in an international friendly.

Zola will not want to sell Cole but cash-strapped West Ham will find an offer of £15million difficult to resist.

The added attraction for Arsenal is that Cole will be available for the Champions League - and his presence will allow Wenger to ensure that Bendtner is not over-used in the taxing months to come.

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Tribal Football Staff

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