Arsenal are set to land Shkodran Mustafi, 24, after lodging a £26m bid with Valencia. With bonuses, the fee will rise to £29.5m if agreed.
The tortuous negotiations are set to bring Arsene Wenger’s hunt for a centre back to a close with the German international expected in London on Monday for a medical.
Claims that a deal was done a fortnight ago were denied by the player’s father as the work of a fantasist, with Mustafi Senior insisting that he was negotiating terms with “2 or 3 other clubs” aside from the Gunners.
However, Valencia need to sell players in order to register their summer signings after admitting they are currently in breach of FFP regulations which has put the north London club in pole position to complete the deal.
Arsenal had to field an inexperienced central defensive partnership for the 3 – 4 defeat against Liverpool last Sunday with Calum Chambers and Rob Holding, both 21, forced into action due to injuries suffered by Gabriel, 25, and Per Mertesacker, 31.
Wenger has been severely criticised by Arsenal supporters for the drawn out hunt for replacements with many believing the club’s reticence to spend has already scuppered their title chances this season.
Read all transfer ins and outs, completed deals visit football transfer news.