Arsenal midfielder Jack Wilshere, 25, faces a difficult eight weeks between now and the New Year. His contract at the club ends next summer with the north Londoners determined not to make any decisions over a new deal until December.
And that, according to the Sunday Mirror, allowed Real Betis to nip in and make their interest in the England international known.
The Andalus club currently sit seventh in La Liga and on the fringes of the Europa League places. Qualifying for European competition makes Betis an attractive option for Wilshere, whose technical abilities are already appreciated in Spain following a destructive performance against Barcelona in the 2011 Champions League.
Wilshere is believed to prefer staying at the Emirates and has so far completed five matches for the Gunners in the Europa League and Carabao Cup. However, he found his path to the England squad blocked by Gareth Southgate because he is not in the Premier League XI.
Arsène Wenger wants to wait until next month for contract talks to give Wilshere the chance to prove his fitness. However, it also runs perilously close to the 1st January deadline, after which the midfielder can talk to overseas clubs.
Betis are the first to show their interest but before chosing Bournemouth for his loan spell, Serie A clubs also declared a willingness to take Wilshere to Italy.
Renewing his contract at Arsenal might be his preferred option but it’s far from a sealed deal.