Arsenal are reportedly bracing themselves for summer bids for loan goal-machine Folarin Balogun, who is attracting interest from “half the Premier League.”

According to Football Insider, Stade Reims’ goal machine Folarin Balogun will return to Arsenal in the summer, but the north London club are expecting offers from “half the Premier League” after his incredible goalscoring form on loan in France.

The 21-year-old joined Ligue 1 outfit Stade de Reims on a season-long loan at the start of the 2022–23 campaign and has been firing on all cylinders ever since.

Balogun, who came through the Arsenal academy and is under contract until 2025, has found first-team opportunities at Arsenal limited, having featured in just 10 games for the Gunners senior team, with two goals and a solitary assist.

His fortunes have changed dramatically at the Stade Auguste-Delaune. In 23 Ligue 1 appearances so far, the young forward has 15 goals and 2 assist to his name. Due to his great influence, the French outfit reportedly tried to convert his loan into a permanent deal in January. But the Gunners swiftly turned down the move.

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The English striker is currently topping the top goalscoring charts in Ligue 1, ahead of more established names such as Alexandre Lacazette, Jonathan David, Wissam Ben Yedder, and the PSG trio of Neymar, Lionel Messi, and Kylian Mbappe.

His fine form this season will inevitably result in a great degree of interest in his services. And the Gunners will have a dilemma on their hands as to whether they want to retain the striker or let him leave and cash him in as long as his stock remains high in wake of his recent exploits.

As such, Balogun is highly regarded by those in the high command at the Emirates, and they believe he has the potential to become a “£50 million-plus star” in the near future , especially if he continues to impress in Ligue 1.

The worst possible scenario would be to keep him around for next season, as the presence of Gabriel Jesus and Eddie Nketiah will only get in Balogun’s way. Jesus only joined Arsenal last summer, while Nketiah put pen to paper on a new long-term contract at a similar time.

Another possibility is that the Gunners hand him a new long-term deal before sending him out on loan again, this time to a Premier League team. That will be an acid test for the young striker, and should he excel once more, the Gunners could only benefit, either by selling him on for big bucks or integrating him into Mikel Arteta’s squad.

It will be interesting to keep tabs on Balogun’s future. Who knows, Arsenal may even opt to sell their prized asset this summer if the right offer comes along, in order to balance their books and fund future transfer moves.

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