Arsenal have demanded a recall option on any loan deal that takes Mathieu Debuchy away from the Emirates, according to the Evening Standard.
Aston Villa had originally hoped to sign the 30-year-old on a permanent basis, but it is understood their precarious position at the foot of the table nipped that in the bud.
However, Debuchy is desperate for first-team football ahead of Euro 2016. Having started just two Premier League games all season, he has already fallen out of Didier Deschamps' plans and must fight his way back in.
SIGN UP NOW
Want to become a GMS writer? Sign up now and submit a 250 word test article: https://gms.to/haveyoursay4
Hector Bellerin is now the firm first-choice for Arsenal and Debuchy made his intentions to leave in January perfectly clear. Now, Aston Villa are believed to be closing in on a six-month loan deal.
But the deal was only able to get to this advanced stage because Remi Garde agreed to a recall option. Arsene Wenger is wary that an injury to Bellerin will leave him short at right-back.
Carl Jenkinson is already on loan at West Ham and no such recall option exists in that deal while Calum Chambers has already been utilised at both centre-back and midfield this season.
A loan fee is yet to be agreed and is complicated by the presence of the recall option. To add to Villa's concerns, Bayer Leverkusen are ready to pounce should talks between the two Premier League clubs stall.
However, Garde has used his strong relationship with Wenger to put Aston Villa firmly at the front of the queue. The Aston Villa boss was Wenger's first signing as Arsenal manager back in 1996 and it is understood the relationship has played a key role in seeing this deal come close to completion.