Lucas Perez has completed a medical in London and will complete his move to Arsenal this weekend.
Arsene Wenger is set to sign the forward for £17million — even though he was turned down by the Gunners one month ago.
The Spanish Deportivo La Coruna striker touched down in the capital on Thursday night ahead of finalising a deal.
Perez has been watched repeatedly by the north London club, but in July they knocked back the chance to sign him.
Yet with pressure from fans demanding action in the transfer market as Wednesday night’s deadline looms, manager Wenger has gone back in for the 27-year-old after he appeared to be heading for Everton.
Perez, who wants to play Champions League football, will have his medical in London today after being offered a four-year contract and it completes a dream rise for him from nomadic forward to being Arsenal’s star summer signing.
Arsenal’s first offer was rejected by Deportivo on Thursday after they tried to pay the modest fee in two instalments, but a subsequent structured bid was accepted.
Despite scoring 17 goals last season, Perez was dismissed in the reports by several scouts as not being at Arsenal’s level and he was well down their list of potential signings.
But they moved back in to nick him off Everton, who had gone for Perez after strong recommendations from new director of football Steve Walsh — a key figure in Leicester striking gold with low-key buys such as Riyad Mahrez, Jamie Vardy and N’Golo Kante.
The Goodison Park club had already agreed terms, but Arsenal have beaten them to his signature.
And Wenger’s late-window spending is unlikely to finish there.
Arsenal are still in the market for a defender and Mirror Sport understands a deal for Valencia’s Shkodran Mustafi could be back on.
The Spaniards have now agreed a £5m deal for Brazilian defender Sidnei – ironically, a Deportivo team-mate of Perez – and that may open the door for Mustafi to leave after all.
There is confidence at the Gunners that the Germany international wants to join them.
Arsene Wenger this morning claimed Arsenal are “99 per cent” certain to do big business in the transfer market.
Gunners boss Wenger is closing in on a £50million double deal for Deportivo La Coruna striker Lucas Perez and Valencia defender Shkodran Mustafi.
But Wenger admitted he has found this summer his hardest ever transfer window as the deals look set to go to the wire.
“I’m 99 per cent confident that we will make a signing,” said Wenger. “I’m more optimistic than before but I can’t announce anything yet.
“Honestly, I expected it to be easier than ever but it looks like it will be harder than ever. It will be frenetic in the next three days.
“I’m happy when our supporters are happy but my focus is on strengthening the squad in the right way.”
Wenger also suggested Calum Chambers could go out on loan with the impending arrival of Mustafi.
“His future is not affected,” said Wenger. “But he could go out on loan.”
Wenger answered criticism from Wales boss Chris Coleman who questioned why Aaron Ramsey played and other Euro 2016 stars were rested. Coleman was annoyed as Ramsey suffered a hamstring injury and is out of the Wales squad.
“Because he didn’t play the final or the semi-final,” said Wenger when asked why Ramsey was played in the season opener against Liverpool.
Wenger claimed Arsenal’s Champions League draw will be tough after they were paired with Paris Saint Germain, Basel and Ludogorets.
“We start in Paris so that will be an interesting test,” said Wenger. “We don’t know too much on Ludogorets at this stage but Basel we will have to be cautious.
Arsenal have the same squad but may be tempted to start with Olivier Giroud and Mesut Ozil.
News Source MirrorNews