Atletico Madrid midfielder Thomas Partey has remained Arsenal’s No.1 target throughout the course of the summer.
The Spanish giants say they would only sell if the £45million release clause in his contract was met.
They have also been looking to tie Partey down to a new contract, which would allow them to substantially raise that clause.
But the 27-year-old, whose current deal runs until 2023, has held out in negotiations.
The Ghanaian international rejected the offer of a new contract earlier in the summer and little has been found in the way of a resolution since.
Now, Marca is saying that Atletico are ready to move for Espanyol’s Marc Roca as his replacement – and need to move on Partey to fund the deal.
So will they be ready to lower their demands for his release clause to be paid?
Or will they continue to demand from Arsenal the full £45million, rather than any cash-plus-player deal, as have previously been mooted?
But so far, the Gunners haven’t shown any inclination to make the move to meet his full release.
However, Partey’s continued hold out and Atletico’s push for a replacement appears to suggest their resistance is fading with regards persuading him to remain.