£56m release clause triggered! Mertesacker replacement close to Arsenal deal

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According to the Mail on Sunday, both Arsenal and Manchester United are considering a summer move for Atletico Madrid defender Jose Maria Gimenez.

The 22-year-old has been heavily linked with a possible move to the Premier League over the past two seasons and interest seems to have intensified.

The talented Uruguayan is highly-regarded as one of the world’s best young defenders and with that in mind, it’s no real surprise that his release clause has been set so high at £56m.

Atletico’s short-term stability has been questioned with their impending stadium move, meaning that they might have to relinquish some of their key players in the next few months with speculation continuing to rise. Koke, Antoine Griezmann and Saúl Nigűez are just three of the players along with Gimenez who have been linked with a switch to England’s top flight and despite an eagerness to retain their players in the long-run, everyone has a price.

The Daily Mail have said that Atletico are willing to compromise on Gimenez’s existing release clause, provided bids are high enough that reflect his current value.

Arsenal are said to have held discreet talks about Gimenez’s availability when suggestions were made that Shkodran Mustafi’s proposed move from Valencia was off.

Manchester United themselves are eyeing defensive reinforcements this summer, with manager Jose Mourinho reportedly unhappy about both Chris Smalling and Phil Jones in central defence.

Although Axel Tuanzebe impressed during his Premier League debut at the Emirates and Timothy Fosu-Mensah is expected to flourish in the future within United’s backline, they’ve tracked Gimenez’s progress for over a year and will be eager to avoid missing out if it’s clear that he is available.

Ultimately, both teams have enough money to compete with one another for his signature. The 22-year-old will have a year left on his current deal at the club this summer, increasing their chances of getting him for a cheaper price.

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