Arsenal are reportedly growing confident of securing the signature of defender William Saliba from Saint-Etienne this summer.
The Gunners have been on the trail of the teenage centre-back in the past month and Evening Standard reports that they are now on the verge of landing his signature for £25m.
However, the north London giants are expected to loan him back to Saint-Etienne for the forthcoming campaign, given the French club are reluctant to accept the deal without the option.
Unai Emery’s side are said to be working on a limited budget between £40m to £45m for the summer and it is suggested that Saliba’s deal won’t hamper their transfer kitty.
The Gunners are likely to pay a minimal fee to agree on the move and thereafter, the remaining sum could be settled in the form of staggered payments starting from the summer of 2020.
Saliba, who was part of the France Under-21 side recently, made his breakthrough during the previous campaign where he made 16 top-flight appearances for Saint-Etienne.
The 18-year-old has been lauded for his impressive concentration and tackling attributes and another season of Ligue 1 football should only do him good before settling into new surroundings.