London bound? one of the most protracted sagas of this transfer window could be coming to an end
Ten things you need to know about Arsenal target Andrei Arshavin
Ex-Arsenal and England doctor Crane dies
ANDREI ARSHAVIN EXCLUSIVE: I want to prove how good I am
ARSENAL FC NEWS FROM ACROSS THE WEB
Reports have suggested Arshavin will ask Arsenal to break their pay structure and match his current wages, believed to top£100,000-a-week, but the 27-year-old is so desperate to move to Emirates Stadium that he will not risk jeopardising the transfer.
The forward had threatened to buy himself out of his contract at the end of the Russian league season in November as talks between the two clubs stalled and wants to seal a switch to north London this month to avoid beginning another campaign in his homeland.
William Gallas is among the highest earners at Arsenal on£80,000-a-week and Arshavin will expect to match that amount while receiving a substantial signing-on fee.
'The fundamental understanding over the transfer of the player is achieved between the clubs,' read a statement on Zenitâ€™s official website.
'At the moment the basic obstacle in realisation of the transaction is Andrei Arshavinâ€™s personal requirements.'
There are several other issues to be resolved such as Zenit asking Arshavin to repay half the£4.5m bonus he received when signing a long-term contract in 2006.
The Gunners now look set to cool their interest in another transfer target, Micah Richards, after the Manchester City defender insisted he is staying at Eastlands.
Staying put: Micah Richards (right)
'Itâ€™s always flattering being linked with a club like Arsenal, and they have one of the best managers in the world in Arsene Wenger,' said the 20-year-old, who supported Arsenal as a youngster. 'However, as I said before, Iâ€™m happy at Manchester City and believe that the club is going in the right direction.
'Weâ€™ve had a difficult season all round, which can affect performances, but I think that I can continue my development at City and hopefully win some trophies.
'Iâ€™m still young and still learning, and Iâ€™m fully settled at the club and believe that Mark Hughes will help me to improve my game.'
Wengerâ€™s need to bolster his squad will be further underlined by the extra fixture they created in drawing at Cardiff on Sunday.
The FA Cup fourth-round replay takes place a week tonight and comes on the back of League games at Everton tomorrow evening, West Ham on Saturday and before the north London derby at Tottenham a week on Sunday.
Despite a somewhat subdued display at Ninian Park, Johan Djourou has vowed Arsenal will â€œget the job doneâ€ when the two sides meet again.
Up for the Cup: Johan Djourou (right)
The Swiss centre-back said: 'It is a game we could have done without but we have it and we will do the job at the end of it.
'Replays are what the FA Cup is about. It is the magic of it, you might say, because it is different to play replays and to have the chance to play the same team again.
'It is very important for the players at Arsenal. We are after it, we want to win it. Thatâ€™s the way we play in every competition â€” we are not taking it lightly. It is a competition we want to win because Arsenal wants to be the best and to do that you have to win everything.'
Meanwhile, Gunners chairman Peter Hill-Wood has paid tribute to Arsenal doctor John Crane who died on Sunday evening.
Crane spent more than 30 years at Arsenal before retiring in 2002 and Hill-Wood said: 'He was a fantastic doctor and was a very popular figure at the training ground.
'John will be sadly missed by everyone at the club and our thoughts are with his family and friends at this difficult time.'