Arsenal cold still get one over on their north London rivals Tottenham after Ajax captain Jan Vertonghen admitted that he could still make the move to the Emirates next season.
Tottenham have been in talks with Ajax for the last few days as they attempt to complete a deal for Vertonghen, with the Guardian reporting that they are bidding £9.6million.
The Belgium international has been in superb form again this season and led Ajax to the league title, however, he has admitted that he wants to play in the Premier League next season.
Vertonghen admitted that he wants to join Tottenham, but did make a point that Arsenal are waiting in the wings should Spurs fail to agree a deal with Ajax.
"I’ve said repeatedly that Tottenham are my first choice, but the talks haven’t progressed,” Vertonghen is reported to have said in the Daily Star.
“They have shown me around, I have met all their key people and their chairman came to meet me on Monday. But Arsenal want me too. They remain a possibility if my Spurs move falls through, as Ajax are asking €15m for me.
“That is a lot of money for someone with just a year left on his contract. I’m sure Spurs won’t be able to pay that much after they missed out on the Champions League.
“Ajax want to get as much as they can for me, while Spurs want to pay as little as possible. I hope a deal can be done. But I won’t fight with Ajax – that is the last thing I’d want after so many good years with them.
“England is my preferred destination. But if needed I will see out my contract and leave on a free transfer next year.”
Arsenal have previously enjoyed success when recruiting from Ajax as they managed to sign Vertonghen's former defensive partner Thomas Vermaelen who has gone in to be a he player for the Gunners.
However, Tottenham still appear the favourites to land the centre-back and will be hoping that they can complete the deal in the coming days.