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Arsenal enter negotiations with top Real Madrid target

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The Gunners could hijack Real Madrid’s move for Kai Havertz.

Arsenal have reportedly started their negotiations with Kai Havertz over a possible summer move amid interest from Real Madrid.

The Blancos seemed eager to complete a move for Havertz after Karim Benzema’s decision to leave the club earlier this month. However, it seems that Chelsea’s asking price has fended off the La Liga giants.

According to Fabrizio Romano, Havertz has shown interest in joining the Gunners, having already entered negotiation with the London side.

The Sky Sports journalist claims that Real Madrid talks are “off” for now as Arsenal lead the transfer race. The Gunners will have to pay around £75m to secure a move for the German star.

Arsenal have intensified their activity in the transfer market in recent weeks, with Declan Rice being their priority target. Bayern Munich have reportedly pulled out of the race for the England international, with the Gunners being in pole position to sign him ahead of the next season.

Unlike Rice, whose West Ham contract expires next year, Havertz is under contract at Stamford Bridge until 2025. The Blues are under no pressure to sell the 24-year-old. However, it seems that new manager Mauricio Pochettino is not insisting on keeping the German star in his squad.

Havertz has shown flashes of brilliance since his £62.5m move to Chelsea in 2020. But he is yet to develop into a consistent forward at Stamford Bridge, registering only 19 goals in his 91 appearances for the club.