English giants Manchester United and Arsenal are set to battle for German World Cup winners Mats Hummels and Sami Khedira, according the Daily Mail.
Hummels, who has been identified as the prime target for both United manager Louis van Gaal and Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger, was made captain of the Borussia Dortmund side earlier this season. The 25-year-old centre back is valued at £32million by the Dortmund hierarchy.
Manager Jurgen Klopp dismissed all rumours linking him to the Premier League at the end of the summer transfer window, but with both Arsenal and United running short on quality defenders, Hummels is believed to be the perfect candidate to fill that void.
Thomas Vermaelen was sold to by Arsenal this summer and club legends Rio Ferdinand and Nemanja Vidic left United after being deemed to old to carry on at the top level.
Arsenal are said to be financially capable of pulling off the deal if it comes down to a tug of war between them and United. Wenger has developed a newfound trait of signing world-class players for big money in the last few years, signing Mesut Ozil for £42.5 million from Real Madrid and Alexis Sanchez for a reported £35 million from FC Barcelona.
At this moment the Gunners have the upper hand on the deal. They will be hoping that their strong German core - and Hummels's international colleagues - of Per Mertesacker, Mesut Ozil and Lukas Podolski will be enough to lure the defender to the Emirates.
Van Gaal's approach
United manager Louis Van Gaal though is not known for giving up a deal. It is believed that the Manchester outfit are hellbent on signing the Dortmund stalwart after enduring yet another defensive crisis at the back.
United had to call up reserve player Paddy McNair after injuries to first choice centre backs Chris Smalling, Phil Jones and Jonny Evans. With that in mind it must also be considered that United will have no problem matching Dortmund's valuation for the player.
Another German World Cup winner that both United and Arsenal are after is Real Madrid's central midfielder Sami Khedira. The Daily Star claims that Per Mertesacker and Mesut Ozil both privately spoke to the 27-year-old to try and lure him to the Emirates.
It is believed that the player has agreed personal terms on a five-year-deal with Arsenal, but the Gunners are yet to sort out a fee with Madrid.