Arsenal have ramped up their pursuit of Thomas Partey by reportedly leaving a £43.5million offer on the table for the Atletico Madrid star.
The Ghanaian midfielder has become a key figure at the Wanda Metropolitano this season, featuring 35 times across all competitions to help Atletico reach the Champions League quarter-finals.
However, Partey has a release clause in his contract and according to Corriere dello Sport, Mikel Arteta's side have launched a £43.5m bid.
The report also claims that he is just 'one step away' from moving to the Emirates Stadium.
Arteta is desperate to rebuild his Arsenal squad after taking over as manager in December following a very turbulent season.
The Gunners languish in ninth position in the Premier League, winning just nine times out of a possible 28, and Arteta is seeking reinforcements to make inroads on the top four.
Arteta is reportedly holding out for a defensive midfielder to help protect Arsenal's shaky defence, with Lucas Torreira and Co struggling to nail down a regular starting spot.
However, Partey still has three years remaining on his contract with Atletico, and the club are looking to tie him down to a new deal.
The LaLiga outfit want to reward his hugely impressive form with a pay rise and they hope they can lock him in until 2025, while inserting a much bigger release clause into his terms.