Arsenal scramble to secure £37m deal for Schalke star,Draxler

Date: 30-01-2014 Time: 05:01:45:am

Arsenal were rushing to complete a £37million swoop for Schalke sensation Julian Draxler on Wednesday night.

The Gunners are increasingly confident that a deal to sign the 20-year-old will be completed before Friday night’s transfer deadline.

Sportsmail first revealed Arsenal’s pursuit of Draxler earlier this month, with manager Arsene Wenger believing the Germany forward can be moulded into the next Robin van Persie or Thierry Henry.

VIDEO: Scroll down to see Draxler’s impeccable ball control

Target: Arsenal are closing in on a deal for £37million-rated Schalke forward Julian Draxler (centre)

Arsenal chiefs have flown to Gelsenkirchen in an attempt to push through the move. Negotiations will continue through Thursday, but there is a strong feeling a deal will be concluded.

Schalke are refusing to budge on their £37m valuation. Arsenal have been reluctant to go above £30m but fears of missing out on a player Wenger desperately wants have forced them to ramp up their efforts. The attacking midfielder is nursing an ankle injury but should be fit by the end of February.

Wenger is also keen on taking young Spaniards Cristian Tello and Alvaro Morata on loan. 

Arsenal have enquired about Barcelona’s Tello and have made fresh contact with Real Madrid regarding Morata.

Aaron Ramsey could be out for a month, with the thigh injury that  has kept him out since Boxing Day causing him discomfort in training on Monday. 

Jack Wilshere is also set to miss Sunday’s game against  Crystal Palace with an ankle  problem, while Mathieu Flamini is  banned after his red card against Southampton. Arsenal hope Tomas Rosicky will be fit after recovering from illness and a broken nose.

Main man: Draxler is expected to be converted to a striker by Arsene Wenger as he did with Thierry Henry

Target: Arsenal have made fresh contact with Real Madrid regarding young striker Alvaro Morata

Julian Draxler shows off his exquisite ball control

Meanwhile, Wenger is sure to be frustrated after Arsenal’s FA Cup fifth-round clash against Liverpool was scheduled for Sunday, February 16. The club wanted to play it the day before, to give the team time to recover for their Champions League clash against Bayern Munich on the Wednesday. But the Saturday lunchtime slot has gone to Manchester City v Chelsea.

This week, Wenger and Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho argued over whether Arsenal get an easy ride over fixtures. Mourinho said the Emirates club have an ‘influence’, something Wenger was quick to refute, citing his side’s hectic schedule before Christmas. 

Now they face two huge games in quick succession against Liverpool and Bayern, who play on the Saturday, 24 hours before Arsenal.

Can Wenger turn wunderkind Draxler into another Van Persie?

Who is Arsenal’s new wonderkind?

Julian Draxler, one of the hottest talents in Europe. He made his debut for Schalke aged 17 and, even though he’s only 20, has already played 133 times for the club. He has won 10 Germany caps and scored once, against the USA.

Wenger seems to be favouring Germans.

Draxler would be the fifth in the squad. A product of the national football revolution, it will be money well spent if he has the impact of £42m man Mesut Ozil.

What’s so good about him?

He’s 6ft 2in but one of the Bundesliga’s best dribblers and goes at defenders. He has two good feet, so is comfortable cutting inside.

But do Arsenal need more midfielders?

Wenger may try to turn Draxler into the new Robin van Persie. RVP and Thierry Henry started on the wing, remember.

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