LONDON, ENGLAND - FEBRUARY 16: Mikel Arteta, Manager of Arsenal reacts during the Premier League match between Arsenal FC and Newcastle United at Emirates Stadium on February 16, 2020 in London, United Kingdom. (Photo by Justin Setterfield/Getty Images)

Arsenal are close to signing Chelsea star Willian after offering a lucrative contract and multi-million signing-on fee to him.

The Gunners have leapfrogged former favourites Tottenham in the race for the attacking midfielder and hope to seal a deal in the coming days.

An Arsenal source has told Football Insider the club have made significant moves in recent days to take advantage of Willian’s contract stalemate.

His agent Kia Joorabchian has held extensive discussions with Arsenal technical director Edu and an agreement is close.

The north Londoners are working to sign him as a free agent after he rejected an improved contract offer from Chelsea.

Frank Lampard’s side are still only willing to hand the Brazilian, who turns 32 this month, a two-year deal.

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Arsenal are looking to beat that with a substantial signing-on fee as well as a lucrative contract that would improve his current terms.

Mikel Arteta is convinced the in-form star would be a value signing despite his age and contract demands.

Willian will be available on a free transfer at the end of this season, which could come on Saturday should Bayern Munich eliminate Chelsea from the Champions League.

 

He has been in dazzling form since the Premier League restart, scoring five goals and providing three assists.

Willian has admitted talks with Chelsea over an extension have stalled as they have offered a two-year deal rather than the three-year contract he is seeking.

In other Chelsea news, it can be REVEALED that they are being blown out of the water by Man United over 23-year-old mega-money deal.