Arsenal FC has yet to seal the deal on two players that Mikel Arteta covets. They are Houssem Aouar of Lyon and Thomas Partey of Atletico Madrid. With the transfer deadline only days away, the Gunners need to figure out how to get either or both.

Anything can happen in the coming days. Most feel that a deal is imminent and the only question is if the Gunners can pull off a deal to get both Aouar and Partey. So far, they have failed to convince both Lyon and Atletico with their bids.

On the part of Partey, Los Indios is standing firm on its demand and wants $60 million for the Ghanian player. The Gunners are trying to include a player in the deal to lower the cash outlay but Atletico wants Alexandre Lacazette. Unfortunately, Arteta is not amenable to the deal.

The case of Aouar is no better. Lyon president Jean-Michel Aulas confirmed that there was an offer made but branded it as “timid.” However, he is not closing the doors entirely. A deal could be made before the deadline or none at all. Lyon is seeking roughly $44 million for the 22-year-old player, Goal reported.

Regardless, some people are impressed with the efforts of Arteta. That includes former Arsenal great Lee Dixon who praised the Spaniard for adding a bit of creativity in retooling the midfield. Dixon touched on the matter when he spoke to talkSPORT.

“I think he’s got his eye on a few more players. If he can get them over the line in the next week or so…,” Dixon said. “I think a creative midfield player is key. When [Dani] Ceballos came on [against Liverpool] you could see the difference in that creative side of things.”

Based on the latest reports, it appears the Gunners may have gotten a break. ESPN reports that Lyon is willing to lower its asking fee for Aouar to $52 million. The highest bid that the Gunners have made for the French national is $45 million. That narrows the gap immensely with Lyon now waiting for Arsenal to make its move.

Mikel Arteta, Manager of Arsenal Mikel Arteta, Manager of Arsenal Getty Images | Will Oliver - Pool