Arsenal have pulled out of the race to sign Southampton midfielder Morgan Schneiderlin because he is too expensive, according to the Daily Mail.
The French international is seemingly set to leave St. Mary's in the summer a year after trying to force his way out of the club, despite the Saints' successful season.
Schneiderlin has admitted he wants to be playing Champions League football next season but it looks like that won't be at the Emirates Stadium. According to the Daily Mail, Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger has been put off by Southampton's £25 million price tag, as well as the emergence of Francis Coquelin in the heart of his midfield.
Coquelin was recalled from a loan spell with Charlton mid-way through last season and emerged as Wenger's first-choice defensive midfielder in the absence of Mikel Arteta, earning plaudits as the Gunners qualified for the Champions League once more and claimed victory in the FA Cup final.
According to the Mail, Wenger is convinced that Coquelin can develop into a bona fide star, and so will keep out of the race to sign Schneiderlin and spend his money elsewhere. That could be on a new striker to offer competition to Olivier Giroud, while reports suggest that the French boss is in the market for a new goalkeeper as well.
Jackson Martinez has been suggested as a potential target in attack, while Petr Cech of Chelsea could replace Wojciech Szczesny and David Ospina in goal.
With Arsenal out of the picture it looks like a straight shoot-out between Manchester United and Tottenham for Schneiderlin's services. Spurs boss Mauricio Pochettino would dearly like to link up with the midfielder who he managed at Southampton and he may well have the chance to do so if Manchester United focus their attention on signing alternative targets such as Bastian Schweinsteiger or Ilkay Gundogan instead.