Arsenal have begun working on a transfer that would bring Ruben Neves to the Emirates this summer.
Mikel Arteta has several targets in mind as he looks to bounce back from a disappointing campaign in the Premier League.
A midfielder to sit next to Neves is being eyed with speculation growing over the current crop.
The Gunners could be extremely light by the start of the season with Dani Ceballos returning to Real Madrid, Matteo Guendouzi close to Marseille and Granit Xhaka eyeing a move to Roma to play under Jose Mourinho.
It would leave Thomas Partey and Mohamed Elneny as the only options in central midfield, while Emile Smith Rowe is more of a No.10 by trade.
According to The Times, Arsenal have begun working on a deal to sign Neves from Wolves.
The Portugal international is one of a handful of stars whose futures are up in the air following the departure of Nuno Espirito Santo.
Adama Traore and Pedro Neto are also being tipped to leave as Wolves seek to bring in funds for a new manager to work with, with Chelsea reportedly keen on the former.
Neves could be available for as little as £34m – a relative bargain in today’s market – and one the Gunners are definitely interested in.
The midfielder has a number of attributes that would suit Arsenal, including his set-piece delivery and free-kicks.
As well as Neves, there is an interest in Brighton star Yves Bissouma – who has already hinted that he would love to move to north London.
The Mali international wants to leave the Seagulls this summer and a number of clubs are looking to snap up the midfielder, including Liverpool who are looking to replace Georginio Wijnaldum.
As well as a midfielder, Arteta is in the market for a centre-back and a goalkeeper – with Ajax star Andre Onana close to a move.
Meanwhile, Wolves general manager of football operations Matt Wild has insisted Neves is going nowhere.
“I think in the press or our fans are thinking he’s only signed up to 2023, but in fact he is on contract until 2024,” Wild told the Express & Star.
“He’s still got another three years, so fans don’t need to worry that he’s going to be going anywhere, or he’s going to be out of contract any time soon. So, yes, he’s still got another three years on his contract.”