Arsenal face French fight over Barcelona stopper

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Football News

Arsenal face competition from AS Monaco in the race to sign Barcelona keeper Victor Valdes, according to reports.

The Daily Express cite claims in Spanish paper Mundo Deportivo when reporting that the Ligue 2 outfit are keen on the Spain international stopper, and have the financial power to make an enticing offer thanks to the backing of Russian owner Dmitry Rybolovlev.

A move could depend on Claudio Ranieri securing promotion back to the French top flight this season, and the tinkerman has four games to cement his side’s position at the top of the second tier – they are currently five-points clear.

Interest from the south coast of France is sure to alert Arsenal over the 31-year-old, who is expected to leave the Nou Camp at the end of the season after admitting he wasn’t going to extend his contract with the club.

Valdes’ current deal expires in the summer of 2014, and Tito Vilanova will have to sell before the start of next season or risk losing the three-time Champions League winner for nothing.

And, with Arsene Wenger looking for a replacement for Wojciech Szczesny at the Emirates Stadium, a move could be forthcoming from the Gunners.

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