Arsenal transfer blow as Italian giants close in on £21m Gunners target

Schalke 04’s Julian Draxler is in talks with Champions League finalists Juventus, despite persistent transfer links to Arsenal.

Sky Sport Italia [cited by the Express] claim that the Bundesliga outfit have allowed the Germany international to begin negotiating personal terms with the Serie A champions – after Massimiliano Allegri made a £14m bid for his signature.

According to the report, however, the £14m offer falls short of Schalke’s valuation of the 21-year-old, and despite talks having opened, Juve will have to increase their bid to £21m before any move can be confirmed.

The versatile attacker is said to be demanding a £3.5m-per-year contract, the Express claim.

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The news may come as a blow to Arsenal – who, as the Metro state, has been linked to the Gunners for the past four transfer windows.

Besides signing Chelsea’s Petr Cech [via Sky Sports], Arsene Wenger has been tame in the summer market, and it seems that the opportunity to clinch the signature of Draxler – as suggested with new Manchester United arrival Morgan Schneiderlin [via the Daily Star] – may have been rebuffed by the Frenchman.

Nonetheless, the German made just eight Bundesliga starts last season, missing 22 games from October 2014 to March 2015 [via Transfer Markt], and is arguably failing to live up to the high expectations placed on his young shoulders.

He has scored just four goals and registered seven assists in the last two campaigns – making his valuation debatable.

At £21m, Draxler could be considered a gamble signing from Wenger – and the 65-year-old certainly isn’t renown for significant risk-taking in the transfer market.

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