Bernabeu outfit lead Emirates Stadium side in pursuit of Spanish midfielder.
Arsenal appear to have failed in their efforts to sign Real Sociedad midfielder Asier Illarramendi, according to the Daily Express.
The news comes in wake of reports in Spain that Real Madrid have activated the release clause of the Spanish youngster, believed to be in the region of £25million, which Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger deems too expensive for the rising young star.
The 23-year old midfielder has been a main stake in Real Sociedad’s team these past few seasons, helping them secure a 4th place finish in La Liga last year, securing a Champions League place. Illarramendi was also hugely impressive in Spain’s championship run at this summer’s U20 European championships in Israel.
Wenger identified Illarramendi as the perfect long-term answer to their holding midfield problems, seeing Abou Diaby go down season after season with injuries, and Emmanuel Frimpong not ready for regular first team action alongside Mikel Arteta.
Spanish source Marca claimed that Real Madrid agreed a fee for Illarramendi this week, as they continue to strengthen their squad as they look to overturn Barcelona as Spain’s top dogs. Real Madrid intended to sign Paulinho this summer, before he agreed a move to Tottenham this week, and also expressed interest in signing in-demand Sevilla midfielder Geoffrey Kondogbia, who is also a target of Arsenal’s.