EPL Transfer News: Tottenham trying to hijack Arsenal's move for highly rated French teenager
What's the story?
However, cross-city rivals Tottenham Hotspur seem to have revived their interest in the French U-21 international, making a last-minute bid to gazump the Gunners' previous offer.
In case you didn't know...
Arsenal have been pretty dormant in this transfer window, specially when compared to their top six rivals, each one of whom have secured big-money signings. Highly rated teenage Brazilian striker Gabriel Martinelli was bought in from Ituano for a reported fee of €6 million, but the Gunners have thus far failed to secure any player who would directly improve the first team, much to the frustration of Arsenal fans.
Tottenham on the other hand, secured the blockbuster signing of midfielder Tanguy Ndombele from Lyon for club record fee of £55 million, in addition to signing 18-year-old winger Jack Clarke from Leeds United.
Having reached the final of the Champions League last season and their new stadium operating in full flow, Spurs look set to continue their spending spree after ending their 517 day transfer embargo earlier this month.
The heart of the matter
According to the hugely reliable David Ornstein, negotiations between Saliba, Arsenal and St. Étienne were in the very final stages, with final details of the player's contract being drafted by the lawyers.
However, Tottenham have made an bid of €30 million excluding bonuses, which betters Gunners' offer of €30 million including bonuses, apparently also accepted by the Ligue 1 club.
If Tottenham do get the deal over the line, it will prove to be a major coup over their North London rivals, as Saliba looked set to move to the Emirates earlier this week.
It remains to be seen how the Arsenal hierarchy react to the offer by Spurs. A bidding war between the derby rivals seems to be inevitable, but it remains to be seen how far the Gunners can go with their tight budget.