TOTTENHAM have managed to steal a march on Arsenal over a deal for William Saliba because they managed to negotiate all aspects of the deal.
Tottenham have entered the race for Saliba very late in the day and are hoping to steal a march on arch rivals Arsenal.
The Gunners have tracked the teenager for much of the summer and he was among their top transfer targets.
A deal between Arsenal and the French side had been agreed in principle, but they still needed to thrash out the term of how bonuses would be structured and paid.
Tottenham have swooped in and negotiated all relevant aspects of the deal and are due to meet today to complete the deal, reports RMC Sport.
Mauricio Pochettino’s side have submitted an offer that exceeds €30m (£26.9m) – which is more than Arsenal could offer.
The Gunners are working with a very small transfer budget despite Unai Emery needing an abundance of new players if he is to turn things around at the Emirates.
Tottenham are aware that centre-back Toby Alderweireld may be heading for the exit door this summer and a replacement is needed.
The Belgian defender is entering the final 12 months of his current deal and is available for £25m.
The Champions League finalists have finally released the financial shackles are look ready to spend where necessary to ensure they continue challenging.
Tanguy Ndombele has already arrived for a club-record fee and, despite only making a handful of appearances, Saliba could follow his compatriot.
It would be a major kick in the teeth for Emery and Arsenal who had looked like Saliba’s next destination.
With Laurent Koscielny refusing to partake in the club’s pre-season activities it furthers their need to recruit in that area.
A centre-back was already a priority, as is a full-back, but it looks as if Emery may have to start looking elsewhere.
Failure to sign Saliba should inject a sense of urgency into the Gunners who have yet to complete a deal for Celtic’s Kieran Tierney.
The Scottish champions haven’t been satisfied with the offers tabled by Arsenal and an agreement is still someway off.