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Arsenal close on French centre-half

Arsenal are close to agreeing a deal for Saint Etienne centre-half William Saliba.

The teenager made 19 appearances for the Ligue 1 side last campaign, and has just been rewarded with a new four year contract.

However, Arsenal have been keep tracks on him for some time, and have now made their move, with French news outlets claiming that the player has agreed personal term with Arsenal on a five year contract.

What remains is for Arsenal and Saint-Etienne to come to an arrangement over the fee, and here is where a potential complication lies. Saint-Etienne do not want to lose him, and are trying to insist that a pre-condition of any deal is that Saliba is lent back to them immediately for next season.

Arsenal would prefer that he joins them immediately, so it might be that some compromise on the £25 million that the French side are demanding for the 18-year old is made to accommodate the wishes of both parties.

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