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Arsenal close to reaching 25m agreement for French defender

Arsenal are reportedly close to landing the signature of defender William Saliba from Saint-Etienne during this summer’s transfer window.

The Gunners have been in regular discussions with the Ligue 1 side in the past few weeks and the club have now agreed on a £25m package to be settled in the form of staggered payments.

According to L’Equipe, the Gunners have managed to beat the likes of Tottenham Hotspur and Wolverhampton Wanderers to the defender, who made 16 top-flight appearances for Saint-Etienne last term.

However, the Frenchman may not have an immediate impact with the team, considering Saint-Etienne are expected to re-sign him on a season-long loan shortly after the transfer deal is announced.

Arsenal are working on a restricted budget for the summer and the form of payment negotiated for Saliba has meant that Unai Emery will have most of the budget to spend on other recruits.

The north London club have only signed Gabriel Martinelli from Ituano this summer.

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