Want-away winger Dimitri Payet still has his sights set on a dream move to the Barclays Premier League despite trying to force a deadline day move to Ligue 1 rivals Paris Saint Germain.
The Daily Mail reports that Arsenal and Chelsea are prepared to lock horns in a bid to bring the 23-year-old winger to England amidst further outside interest from Liverpool.
Payet launched a one-man strike in the January transfer window and even travelled to Paris on deadline day in a bid to join PSG, but no offer to Saint-Etienne was forthcoming and he was made to stay put.
Saint-Etienne punished the France international by relegating him to the reserves but Payet says he hasn't experienced any problems with his team-mates. "I'm doing very well," he told a press conference last Thursday.
"I've re-joined the squad normally, everything's going very well with my team-mates and for the time being, there are no problems.”
The Frenchman was the subject of a £7m bid from Chelsea boss Carlo Ancelotti in January but was denied the chance to move to Stamford Bridge when the offer was rejected.
It is thought that the Blues will renew their interest in the summer after club owner and Russian billionaire Roman Abramovich paved the way for more signings as Chelsea look to freshen up their ageing squad.
Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger is also keen on the versatile winger, who can play on either flank and is rumoured to be mulling over a summer approach to bring the player to the Emirates stadium.
With the Gunners still well and truly in the hunt for the Premier League title this year, Wenger hopes that on field success this season will persuade the player that his long-term future is best served at Arsenal.
The Anfield link to Payet stems from Liverpool’s Director of Football Strategy Damien Comolli who knows the player well from his time at Saint-Etienne – a post he left in November, and is said to be a huge admirer.
However, Comolli left the French outfit on bad terms after complaining about the working environment so a proposed move to Liverpool would seem less likely.
What’s certain is that Payet will leave Saint-Etienne at the end of the season with club officials now ready to listen to offers, but the eventual destination of this rising French star, be it Arsenal, Chelsea or even Liverpool still remains to be seen.