Zenit still value Arshavin at £18 million, but the Russian club are under pressure from the player to sell. Zenit have already signed Portugal midfielder Danny from Dinamo Moscow for £30 million as a replacement.
Arsenal's hopes of signing Arshavin improved recently following reports from Russia claiming that Zenit had invited officials from the Emirates Stadium to discuss a move for the midfielder.
"Zenit have invited Arsenal officials to come to St Petersburg next Tuesday," said club spokesman Alexei Petrov. "This is to show that Zenit does want to find an option which will be acceptable for everyone."
The 27-year-old player has made clear he wants to join Arsenal and sources in Russia say the invitation to Arsenal officials is a gesture by Zenit to show that they do want the deal to go through successfully.
According to the Mail on Sunday
, windfalls from the sell-on fees for Lassana Diarra, David Bentley and Fabrice Muamba have ensured there is cash to spend, and the Arsenal board have agreed to make available early cash that was earmarked for the summer.