Arsenal have moved into pole position in the race to sign Borussia Dortmund star Marco Reus, who has been strongly linked with Manchester United and Barcelona amongst other top European clubs in recent weeks.
This is according to German newspaper Welt - and brought to our attention by the Metro - who claim that Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger is 'desperate' to sign the Germany international.
Arsenal expect to sign Reus
The report adds that Arsenal "expect" to sign the 25-year-old, who has been one of the Bundesliga's most impressive performers over the past three seasons.
He scored 21 goals in 37 appearances for Borussia Mönchengladbach before securing a move to Borussia Dortmund in 2012.
In his first campaign at Signal Iduna Park, Reus netted 19 goals in 47 matches - and he bagged 23 goals in 43 appearances for the 2013 Champions League finalists last term.
Arsenal pulled plug after ankle injury
Arsenal were reportedly close to signing Reus this summer, but decided against doing the deal after the German star suffered a serious ankle injury on the eve of the World Cup finals, which kept him out of the showpiece international tournament.
Wenger will now return for Reus - although a deal may not be completed until next summer, when the player's £19.8 million release clause comes into effect.
Arsenal have the financial resources available to pay a substantial transfer fee earlier than that, as well as the required funds to meet the forward's wage demands, but whether Dortmund will be prepared to sell is another matter.
Jurgen Klopp is determined to keep his best players at Signal Iduna Park ahead of the 2014/15 campaign after losing star striker Robert Lewandowski to Bayern Munich - but might be open to negotiations after Reus rejected a new contract offer from Dortmund last week.
Reus currently picks up £65,000-a-week at Borussia Dortmund, but can expect a significant wage increase on his next deal - whether that's with Dortmund, Arsenal, or any other the other top clubs keen on signing him.
Watch: Marco Reus in action
Klopp - along with Borussia Dortmund chiefs - will be determined to make sure he doesn't become the latest BVB player to strengthen fierce rivals Bayern Munich.
Barcelona's interest appears to have cooled following their £75 million acquisition of Luis Suarez.
Liverpool have splashed out £20 million on Serbia international Lazar Markovic, who plays in the same position as Reus.
And Manchester United look set to use a 3-4-1-2 formation from the start of the season, which uses wing-backs rather than traditional wingers.
Arsenal, though, have a space available for the prolific winger and will now press on with plans to bring him to the Emirates Stadium.
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