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Arsenal are set to step up its interest in Atletico Madrid defender Jose Gimenez, according to reports.
Gimenez was linked with a move to the Emirates in the summer transfer window but a switch failed to materialize and Wenger ended up bringing Shkodran Mustafi to the Emirates.
Mustafi has made a bright start to life at Arsenal, quickly establishing himself as a key player in the squad and forming a solid partnership with Laurent Koscielny but it is understood that Wenger is still keen on signing a defender next summer and will return for Gimenez.
According to Don Balon via the Daily Star, Wenger’s interest in Gimenez is due to doubts over the quality of Gabriel Paulista who has failed to impress since he joined us in January 2015.
However, we will face serious competition for the Uruguayan’s signature from Manchester United who are also in the running to sign the defender.
But the report claims we will make the first move by submitting a bid of £26m for the star. While this will excite many Gooners, it would be interesting to note that it is almost impossible for us to sign the defender for that fee.
Gimenez has a £54m release clause in his contract and with Atletico unwilling to sell, they are likely to hold out for his release clause if the player wants to leave and our reported bid is way short of the clause.
Also reports claim Manchester United are ready to pay up to £50m for the defender which will make our bid look like a joke.
It will be interesting to see how this will pan out. we can’t tell whether Wenger will be force to up the bid or give up on the defender but it promises to be an intriguing transfer battle.