Arsene Wenger has been handed £70m in the summer transfer window and he is closing in on Belgium and Sunderland goalkeeper Simon Mignolet, who is rated at £10m.
Gunners boss Arsene Wenger has moved into pole position to sign the highly-rated Belgium -international in a £10million-plus deal this summer.
Mignolet kept 11 clean sheets this season and played in every single game for Sunderland in the Premier League.
Wenger is prepared to use a significant chunk of his £70m transfer budget to tempt 25-year-old Mignolet from Wearside in a bid to finally resolve the long-standing goalkeeping issues at the Emirates.
And the fact Arsenal can offer Mignolet Champions League football is a huge pull for the keeper, who wants to establish himself as his nation’s number one choice before the 2014 World Cup Finals.
Liverpool also watched Mignolet several times last season but their interest has cooled.
They are now understood to have turned their attentions to Stoke’s Asmir Begovic and Swansea’s Michel Vorm as summer targets.
A fee of around £10m for Mignolet, who was signed by Steve Bruce for just £2m three years ago, would be the biggest deal for a keeper between two Premier League clubs.
But the British goalkeeping record is the £17m that Manchester United paid Atletico Madrid for David De Gea.
Sunderland boss Paolo Di Canio is pulling out all the stops to keep Mignolet, who played a huge part in saving Sunderland from relegation.
And, while a new contract will be offered, it is unlikely to prevent Mignolet leaving.