Chelsea goalkeeper Petr Cech will undergo a medical with Arsenal today ahead of a switch to north London.
The 33-year-old is said to have agreed personal terms with the Gunners and a fee has been thrashed out with Chelsea, meaning the deal is now a formality.
Cech has been with Chelsea since joining from Rennes in 2004 and has helped the club win four Premier League titles, four FA Cups as well as the Champions League. However he lost his first team spot to Thibaut Courtois last term after the Belgian returned from a loan spell with Atletico Madrid and made just six Premier League appearances last time round.
Article continues below
That has prompted him to seek an exit from west London and now Chelsea have sanctioned his sale to one of their title rivals. The BBC's David Ornstein says that the deal is is almost over the line and should be finalised after the formalities by the end of the day.
Blues boss Jose Mourinho has previously admitted he was against selling to a direct rival, however Cech is believed to have had an agreement in place with owner Roman Abramovich to let him choose his next club as thanks for his loyal service.
Article continues below
"I will have to accept any decision that the owner has," he told reporters earlier this month. "I’m different. I have the same respect for Petr that everybody at the club has, but my answer [to a proposed move to Arsenal] would be: ‘No way.’ If the answer is different I will accept that.
"But at every club that is interested in Petr I can find a player that I like in that team, too.”
Cech is believed to have signed a contract worth £100,000-per-week at the Emirates Stadium - making him the highest paid goalkeeper in the club's history.
The arrival of Cech will have implications for either David Ospina or Wojciech Szczesny, one of which is likely to leave the club. Szczesny insisted after Arsenal's FA Cup win that he would remain in north London for next season, while Ospina has been linked with Fenerbahce.
This is the perfect deal for Cech and Arsenal - they get a world class 'keeper and he gets to keep his settled family in London.
The biggest losers appear to Chelsea although they must be commended for sticking to their word when it could have been so easy to block him from joining a rival. Only time will tell if he will make a difference to the Gunners' title hopes.
Have Chelsea been naive not to block Cech from joining Arsenal?
Do YOU want to write for GiveMeSport? Get started today by signing-up and submitting an article HERE: http://gms.to/writeforgms