Real Madrid are willing to accept an offer from Arsenal for Karim Benzema, increasing the likelihood of Arsene Wenger getting his No.1 target this summer.
Wenger, knowing the importance of signing a marquee central striker, whose goals can potentially win you the Premier League, has been working hard to try and tempt Real Madrid into selling Benzema this summer, and after initially receiving positive signs, it seemed the deal was dead.
However, the Arsenal manager was always willing to wait till the final days of the transfer window in order to sign the France international, with the club even making a second bid of around £40million recently.
Real Madrid had initially turned down that offer, insisting Benzema was not for sale, but now, according to Fichajes, the Spanish club have had a rethink and are open to taking the money and letting Benzema leave for the Emirates.
Florentino Perez reportedly has Borussia Dortmund playmaker Marco Reus lined up as Real's marquee signing of the summer – if Real cannot tempt Manchester City into selling Sergio Aguero that is -- and Benzema might be the player to make way for the German, much like Mesut Ozil did when the Spanish side signed Gareth Bale.
Rafa Benitez, after Real's penalty shootout victory over AC Milan in the International Champions Cup in Shanghai on Thursday said the club are open to signing new players.
"The squad we have is a good one, I have to work with them and if anyone comes in they'll be a welcome addition, but they have to improve what we currently have," Benitez said.
"Have I asked for anyone? My conversations with the board are private."
Cristiano Ronaldo has found himself in the centre-forward position, as has Bale, on a few occasions in preseason, with Real's front three constantly changing their positions, and if Benzema leaves and Reus comes, Ronaldo could find himself in that centre-forward role more often than not for the new season.
It is a big if, however, as Benitez has repeatedly said Benzema is one of the most important players in Real's attack, while the Frenchman remains one of Perez's favourite players.
However, if Real Madrid believe Reus could work better for the club for the new season, Benzema could find himself surplus to requirements, opening up the chance for Arsenal and Wenger to make their move.
While Olivier Giroud has improved with every passing season, there is no doubt that a world-class calibre upgrade in the centre forward position will take Arsenal up a level, a level which could be the difference between the Premier League title and just another top-four finish.