Arsenal playmaker Mesut Ozil has urged his Germany teammates Mats Hummels and Benedikt Howedes to join him in the Premier League next season.
The Sun quote Ozil as saying: “Mats and Benedikt have the qualities to make a mark at a big club here.”
Both Hummels and Howedes are understood to be on Arsene Wenger's radar, but Manchester United are currently leading the race for the former.
Article continues below
Borussia Dortmund captain Hummels reportedly admitted last week that he is ready to leave Signal Iduna Park - and Ozil's reassuring words could convince the 26-year-old to join the Red Devils over AC Milan, who are also keen on securing the World Cup winner's signature.
Schalke captain Howedes, who has 32 Germany caps to his name, has been linked with a move to Arsenal more times than Hummels over recent months.
Article continues below
Howedes more likely to join Arsenal
But whether Wenger will enter the transfer market for a new centre-back this summer is unclear.
The veteran French coach already has one of the best central defenders in the Premier League at his disposal - in the form of Laurent Koscielny - but Per Mertesacker didn't enjoy his best campaign last season and Wenger may think about bringing in an upgrade.
However, the Gunners also have 20-year-old Calum Chambers in their ranks, the talented English defender who appears to have an extremely bright future ahead of him in the game.
Manchester United manager Louis van Gaal has even more options at centre-back than Wenger, but reportedly wants another top-level central defender as an upgrade on Jonny Evans, who is expected to leave Old Trafford this summer.
Hummels is currently top of Van Gaal's radar, but Valencia's Nicolas Otamendi is another - albeit potentially more expensive - option for the Premier League giants.
United set to make Hummels bid this week
United are set to make a formal bid for Hummels this week and could tempt Borussia Dortmund into selling their wantaway skipper with a £20 million offer - a relatively modest fee for a defender of his quality and experience.
Dortmund are unable to offer Hummels Champions League football next season after finishing the 2014-15 campaign in seventh place, a massive 33 points behind Bundesliga champions Bayern Munich.
Hummels is unhappy with how far Dortmund have slumped behind his former employers, while the departure of influential manager Jurgen Klopp has also convinced him to leave the 2013 Champions League finalists.
With AC Milan also unable to offer Hummels top-level European football next term, a move to Manchester United appears the most likely outcome at this stage.
And, should that happen, Ozil may have inadvertently helped strengthen one of Arsenal's Premier League rivals.
Which club will Mats Hummels be playing his football at next season? Have your say in the comments below!
Do YOU want to write for GiveMeSport? Get started today by signing-up and submitting an article HERE: http://gms.to/writeforgms