Bayern Munich have joined the race to sign Athletic Bilbao centre-back Unai Nunez, who is also a reported target for Arsenal.
The 22-year-old has been restricted to just three La Liga appearances so far this season, but impressed enough to earn his first international cap for Spain in a Euro 2020 qualifier against the Faroe Islands in September.
Nunez has been tipped for a bright future at the highest level, with a number of top European clubs thought to be monitoring his progress at Bilbao.
According to the Daily Mail, Arsenal are among those keeping tabs on the defender, with his current buy-out clause set at £30 million.
Goal reports that Bayern are now set to rival the Gunners for Nunez’s signature, with head coach Niko Kovac on the lookout for a replacement for the injured Niklas Sule in the heart of the defence.
Jerome Boateng is now the only fit natural option at centre-back for the German champions, with versatile stars Javi Martinez, Benjamin Pavard and David Alaba likely to have to fill in for Sule while he recovers from an anterior crucial ligament tear.
Luring Nunez to the Allianz Arena in January would certainly ease some of the pressure on Kovac, with some fans and experts calling for him to be replaced in the hot seat after a mixed start to the 2019-20 campaign.
Arsenal could also use some extra defensive reinforcements, with too many gaps at the back costing Emery’s side valuable points in the Premier League.
Nunez could slot into the Gunners’ defence alongside David Luiz nicely, but it remains to be seen whether or not he would prefer to move to England over Germany.
The Bilbao ace has four years remaining on his existing deal at San Mames Stadium, but the chance to take a step up to one of the biggest clubs in Europe may too difficult to turn down should any formal offers be forthcoming when the market reopens.