Chelsea are becoming increasingly confident that they'll sign Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain from Arsenal this summer.
Despite the Gunners making a monstrous £180,000-a-week offer that would place the versatile Englishman among their highest-ever wage earners, a report from Mirror Sport has revealed that the Arsenal man is heading to the exit door - with his club ready to start a £35m auction.
The reported decision by Arsenal looks to have been made to focus on the contract extensions of star men Mesut Ozil and Alexis Sanchez, before they decide to leave for free in the next summer window.
Chelsea and Liverpool are the clubs interested in signing Oxlade-Chamberlain and it looks as if he will now be sold by Arsenal instead of being allowed to run down the remainder of his deal and potentially leave for free next year. The Blues remain in pole position to secure his services, however the Gunners have yet to receive a bid from Chelsea or Liverpool.
Arsenal will certainly feel that £180,000-a-week is a very competitive offer given Oxlade-Chamberlain has only cemented a starting place at the end of last season and has only scored nine goals in his 130 Premier League appearances.
On the other hand, Antonio Conte is determined to land his man by personally pushing Chelsea's bid to sign the versatile Englishman who can play at wing-back, central midfield and on the flanks. This versatility, alongside his home-grown status, is particularly appealing to the Italian.
Arsene Wenger has attempted to keep his player by suggesting that he has a "responsibility" at Arsenal since joining from Southampton at the age of 17 and says that he is now ready to become one of the main pillars of the first team.
Yet, Oxlade-Chamberlain has supposedly told his manager in a face-to-face conversation that he believes a move away from the Emirates would be best for his career and development.