Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger is optimistic he can strike a bargain deal to sign Valencia’s highly-rated left-back Jose Gaya before the winter transfer window closes on Monday night.
This is according to the Express, who understand Arsenal are seriously considering triggering the Spain Under-21 international's £13.5 million release clause within the coming days.
Reports in Spain claim Valencia are poised to offer Gaya, 19, a bumper new contract - complete with a huge new release clause - meaning Arsenal will need to act swiftly in order to sign the talented Spaniard at his current price.
Valencia now in a stronger position
Valencia, thanks to the financial backing of new owner Peter Lim, no longer find themselves in a position where they are forced to sell their best players every year in order to break even.
And Los Che hope Gaya, who is also on the radar of Real Madrid, will agree to sign a new deal at the Mestalla over the coming weeks.
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Breakthrough star of 2014-15
The teenager has been one of this season’s breakthrough stars not just in La Liga - but European football as a whole.
Gaya has made 21 appearances this season, scoring two goals, while his energetic style of play has drawn comparisons with former Valencia star Jordi Alba, who left the Mestalla for Barcelona in 2012.
Should he fulfil his potential, Gaya is on course to become one of the world’s best left-backs, hence why the likes of Real Madrid and Arsenal are keen to sign him now.
Upgrade on Gibbs and Monreal
The Spaniard would be an upgrade on Kieran Gibbs and Nacho Monreal at the Emirates Stadium - but Wenger has his work cut out luring the youngster away from Valencia before Monday night’s transfer deadline.
If successful, Gaya would become Arsenal’s third summer signing following the arrivals of midfielder Krystian Bielik and centre-back Gabriel Paulista, whose transfer from Villarreal is expected to be completed imminently.
As things stand it seems likely that Gaya will remain a Valencia player come Tuesday morning, but Wenger and Real Madrid boss Carlo Ancelotti will do everything in their power to lure him away from the Mestalla.