Alexandre Lacazette is top of the list of candidates for Diego Simeone and Atletico Madrid to sign this summer, according to reports in Spain.

LONDON, ENGLAND: Will Hughes of Watford and Alexandre Lacazette of Arsenal on July 26, 2020. (Photo by Neil Hall/Pool via Getty Images)

Spanish outlet Sport claim Alexandre Lacazette is ‘top of the list of candidates’ for Diego Simeone this summer. Atletico Madrid are keen to sign a striker with goals and a strong work ethic to fit the coach’s philosophy.

The La Liga side know they have problems going forward, scoring the fewest goals in the top seven. Despite Lacazette’s rather disappointing goal output in 2019/20, he still scored double figures with 12. He also added seven assists in his 39 appearances.

Plus, there were mitigating factors keeping his goal tally down. Particularly by the end of the season, Lacazette was playing a much deeper role, allowing Aubameyang and Pepe to run off him. The former scored 29 goals, so that plan was clearly working.

LONDON, ENGLAND - JULY 07: Alexandre Lacazette of Arsenal reacts during the Premier League match between Arsenal FC and Leicester City at Emirates Stadium on July 07, 2020 in London, England. Football Stadiums around Europe remain empty due to the Coronavirus Pandemic as Government social distancing laws prohibit fans inside venues resulting in all fixtures being played behind closed doors. (Photo by Michael Regan/Getty Images)
LONDON, ENGLAND – JULY 07: Alexandre Lacazette of Arsenal reacts during the Premier League match between Arsenal FC and Leicester City at Emirates Stadium on July 07, 2020 in London, England. Football Stadiums around Europe remain empty due to the Coronavirus Pandemic as Government social distancing laws prohibit fans inside venues resulting in all fixtures being played behind closed doors. (Photo by Michael Regan/Getty Images)

Assuming Atletico are aware of that context, Lacazette’s goal stats aren’t going to put them off a move this summer.

If Arsenal plan to sell, which I’m not sure they do, it would certainly help them complete a deal for Thomas Partey. Atletico haven’t shown any willingness to negotiate a swap deal, but that’s essentially what this would become.

Whatever Atletico offer for Lacazette would go directly into the fund for Arsenal to activate Partey’s €50m release clause.

It would be a player-plus-cash swap in all but name.

But it all depends on how much Simeone’s team are offering for the striker who has a market value of around £43m and a contract with Arsenal until 2022.