Arsenal open talks with Real Madrid over Karim Benzema

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Arsenal have opened transfer talks with Real Madrid regarding a summer transfer for Karim Benzema, reports the Metro.

The France international has just 12 months to run on his current contract and Real Madrid are currently weighing up moves for potential replacements. The likes of Luis Suarez and Sergio Aguero have been linked in recent weeks with Benzema facing the axe if either of them sign.

Benzema has been a long-term target for Arsenal and it looked like a deal was likely last summer but Arsene Wenger eventually opted to sign Mesut Ozil for £42.4m instead.

Now a world-class striker is top of Wenger's list and Benzema's expiring contract gives the Gunners a much stronger negotiating position than they had last year.

Real Madrid don't want to sell Benzema before a replacement is signed but Arsenal are understandably keen to get their transfer business done as soon as possible.

Arsenal are ready to pay £25m straight up to convince Real Madrid into a quick sale and have been buoyed by reports in Spain that the player himself wants a transfer.

Benzema has been frequently targeted by Real Madrid fans this season, and was openly booed at the Bernabeu a number of times and is ready for a new challenge.

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