Olivier Giroud is prepared to quit Arsenal this summer if Arsene Wenger revamps his strike-force.
France international Giroud is keen to ensure he is playing regular first-team football next season, in order to make his country’s squad for the World Cup in Russia.
With top-scorer Alexis Sanchez likely to leave with just a year left on his contract, Wenger is known to have a new frontman among his list of priorities as he revamps his squad.
Marseille have a strong interest in making Giroud part of a major recruitment drive which they hope will result in the club competing for the French title next season, and booking a return to the Champions League.
They are understood to be ready to pay up to £20million for the 30-year-old former Montpellier star’s services.
Sporting director Andoni Zubizarreta said of Giroud this week: “He is a great player but I refuse to speculate on particular names.”
Although Giroud has so far indicated he has little interest in a return to France, wealthy Marseille – who signed Dimitri Payet from West Ham in January, and are eyeing Leicester star Riyad Mahrez – could test his resolve with a lucrative financial package.
Since signing five years ago, Giroud has scored a total of 98 goals for Arsenal in 225 appearances. He has often been criticised by fans, however, who would prefer the club to sign a world-class finisher.
He helped France to the final of the European Championship on home soil last summer, and could clinch a third FA Cup winner’s medal in four years when the Gunners face champions Chelsea at Wembley next weekend.