Arsene Wenger believes Arsenal are close to completing an impressive double transfer deal for Alexis Sanchez and Mathieu Debuchy worth £35 million, reports The Daily Mirror.
The Gunners boss is confident that both players are keen on a move to the Emirates Stadium and doesn't believe negotiations will take long with either Newcastle, Barcelona or the players.
Arsenal have been in contact with Barcelona and are believed to have launched a bid in the region of £22 million for Sanchez, 25. Wenger has funds to go even higher but thinks Barcelona will lower their £35 million asking price. Arsenal are ready to go up to £25 million at a moment's notice if necessary.
Sanchez's representatives have given Arsenal encouragement that personal terms could be agreed quickly should they agree a fee with Barcelona. Sanchez likes the idea of playing in London and is ready to reject a potential move to Liverpool as a result.
Officials from Arsenal have also been in touch with Newcastle United to hold talks over a move for Debuchy, who is currently enjoying an impressive World Cup campaign with France. Newcastle want £10 million for the right-back and Wenger must be cautious as PSG and Monaco are also believed to be interested.
However, Arsenal believe Debuchy would prefer to stay in the Premier League and would jump at the chance to play under fellow Frenchman Wenger. He would also join international teammates Laurent Koscielny and Olivier Giroud in the Arsenal team.
Replacement for Sagna
Debuchy is arguably a more essential signing than that of Chile international Sanchez as Arsenal have just one recognised right-back in the squad after Bacary Sagna left for Manchester City. Carl Jenkinson remains a firm back-up choice for Wenger, who evidently doesn't believe the Englishman is ready to take on the pressure of being first choice.
Sanchez is seen as a quality signing rather than something that is necessary. Playing on the right-wing, Wenger already has the likes of Theo Walcott and Serge Gnabry in the squad, but some sources believe Wenger sees Sanchez as an out-and-out striker.
A new striker is essential for Arsenal this summer. Not only did Wenger rely heavily on Olivier Giroud last season but, since then, Nicklas Bendtner and Park Chu Young have both left, leaving the unproven Yaya Sanogo and Olivier Giroud as the only senior strikers at the club.
Sanchez has proven goalscoring ability having scored 19 in La Liga for Barcelona last season, coming fourth in the charts behind Cristiano Ronaldo, Diego Costa and Lionel Messi. Despite playing all of his professional career on the wing, Wenger may be planning on moving him to a more central position to complete with Olivier Giroud.
Liverpool talks collapse
One fly in the ointment for Arsenal with regards to Sanchez was Liverpool's intent to include the player in any deal that takes Luis Suarez to Barcelona. Nou Camp officials are currently in London holding talks over a deal for the Uruguayan, but have told Liverpool not to bother with Sanchez, as he has already indicated that he doesn't want to ply his trade at Anfield next season.