Arsenal transfer news: Gunners in talks with Atletico’s Jose Giminez; Latest on Shkodran Mustafi

MADRID, SPAIN - JANUARY 07:  Jose Maria Gimenez of Atletico de Madrid celebrates scoring their second goal with teammates during the Copa del Rey Round of 16  first leg match between Club Atletico de Madrid and Real Madrid CF at Vicente Calderon Stadium on January 7, 2015 in Madrid, Spain.  (Photo by Gonzalo Arroyo Moreno/Getty Images)

Arsenal have opened transfer talks with Atletico Madrid for Uruguayan centre back Jose Giminez as Gunners step up pursuit to bolster their defense before 31 August.

Arsene Wenger’s side suffered a dismal 4-3 opening day defeat to Liverpool on Sunday as youngsters Calum Chambers and Rob Holding failed miserably to keep hold against the threat provided by the attackers of the Merseyside club.

Arsenal are without club skipper Per Mertesacker, who has been ruled for several months with knee injury and Brazilian defender Gabriel, who has also been sidelined for at least a month.

The Gunners are desperate to make defensive reinforcements and Giminez, who has reportedly attracted interest from Real Madrid and Manchester United as well, has now emerged as the latest player to make move to the Emirates this summer.

Since joining Atletico Madrid in 2013, the 21-year-old has become an integral part of Diego Simeone’s side, that finished runner-ups in two of last three Champions League campaigns.

And according to the Dailymail, Arsenal have entered negotiations to sign the Uruguay International but Atletico Madrid’s valuation for the centre back could be a major tumbling block in the deal.

The Spanish giants want in excess of £40 million for Giminez but the Gunners remain hopeful that Atletico’s asking price can be negotiated.

Arsenal have been linked with a host of defenders in recent weeks, including the likes of Barcelona’s Jeremy Mathieu and Southampton’s Jose Fonte.

Arsene Wenger has reportedly made enquiry to sign £8 million-rated Portugal International Jose Fonte, who has also been heavily linked with a move to Man Utd this esummer.

While, according to the Sport, the Premier League giants have also approached Barcelona for French centre back Jeremy Mathieu but the La Liga champions have refused to sell the veteran Frenchman.

However, Valencia’s central defender Shkodran Mustafi remains the prime transfer target for Arsenal. Despite the Gunner’s reluctance to pay £30 million for the 23-year-old, the Mustafi appears likely to join the North London club, who have received a timely boost in their pursuit to sign the German International.

The La Liga club have revealed that they could be forced to sell players before the transfer window shuts down on 31 August, in order to register their new signings this summer.

Valencia chief Garcia Pitarch said: “We’re above the FFP guidelines, that’s the reality, and as of today, the four players we’ve signed cannot be registered, meaning we need to reduce the cost in a significant manner to register the players and sign a centre-back, which is a priority in case one of the ones at our club leaves.”

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