ARSENAL look to have been dealt a major blow in their quest to sign Gelson Martins with the Sporting Lisbon ace reportedly poised to join Atletico Madrid.
The 23-year-old was the subject of a £26million bid from the Gunners last month, but now looks to be heading to Spain to link up with Diego Simeone’s side.
According to Portuguese news outlet Record, the winger could complete his move to the Europa League holders by the end of the week.
They claim that Martins has already agreed to sign for Atletico, with an official announcement expected in due course.
While they also state that Sporting may receive striker Luciano Vietto and goalkeeper Andre Moreira on loan as part of the deal.
Martins could feature on the opposite flank of left-winger Thomas Lemar, who moved from Monaco to the Wanda Metropolitano recently.
Since making his debut for Sporting in 2015, Martins has made 125 appearances in all competitions – netting on 25 occasions.
He represented Portugal at the World Cup in Russia – coming on as substitute in the 1-0 win group stage against Morocco.
Should Arsenal miss out on Martins, they could turn their attention to PSV ace Hirving Lozano who starred for Mexico as they reached the last-16.
Unai Emery has been busy in the transfer window since succeeding Arsene Wenger at the Emirates.
FROM RUSSIA WITH LIVE All the latest action, news, goals and gossip from the World Cup
MOST READ IN WORLD CUP 2018
Bernd Leno, Sokratis Papastathopoulos and Stephan Lichtsteiner will all be pressing for clean sheets in North London.
While central midfielders Lucas Torreira and Matteo Guendouzi have also joined the revolution at Arsenal.