William Carvalho Sporting Lisbon Herrera FC Porto
William Carvalho (R) could be an Arsenal player in JanuaryReuters

Arsenal are reportedly close to signing William Carvalho from Sporting Lisbon in the January transfer window.

Carvalho has been a constant name that has been thrown around when it has come to "which defensive midfielder can Arsenal buy," with reports last week suggesting Arsene Wenger was preparing a £20 million move.

The Daily Mail report suggested Sporting Lisbon were ready to let Carvalho leave in January as they no longer are a part of the Champions League after being knocked out in the group stages.

Sporting, in the summer, had demanded Carvalho's release clause of around £37 million, and eyebrows were raised if the Portuguese club would be willing to let go of their defensive midfielder for a cut-down price, considering they were asking so much for their player just a few months ago, even if it was made clear that none of the interested clubs would come anywhere near that amount.

The latest report suggests Arsenal are indeed ready to press ahead with a move for Carvalho, with the club even putting the finishing touches on a move for the highly-rated midfielder.

The deal will be worth around £25.5 million, according to the Daily Star, who cite reports in Portugal.

While Wenger does not have endless amounts of money to spend in the January transfer window, there is little doubt that if push comes to shove Arsenal can easily stump up that £25.5 million to sign a seriously talented midfielder, the kind of player who will give Arsenal that physical presence in midfield without sacrificing their quick, possession-based passing style.

Arsenal require a midfielder at the moment, with several of their stars, including Jack Wilshere, Mikel Arteta and Aaron Ramsey out through injury, and Wenger himself admitted he will look to sign a midfield presence in the January transfer window, provided, of course, he finds the right player.

"There is a need there [to buy], but the right opportunity has to come up," said Wenger. "To buy [just for the sake] to buy is not what we want to do, but if the right opportunity comes up, we will do it.

"If you look at the number of games some players have played and the injuries we have with Wilshere, Ramsey and Arteta, we're a bit short at the moment in midfield."

It remains to be seen if the price being quoted is the "right" price for Wenger, but there is little doubt that Carvalho will bring plenty of quality and presence to the Arsenal midfield, which has been missing for a while.

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