Arsenal have made an enquiry about the possible availability of Athletic Bilbao boss Ernesto Valverde as they consider potential replacements for Arsene Wenger.
Spanish daily Marca claim the Gunners have approached the Liga side about Valverde who has been a leading candidate to take over at Barcelona.
Luis Enrique has already announced he will step down in the summer leading to speculation Valverde could head to Camp Nou at the end of the season.
However, Arsenal have now joined the race for his signature and Valverde is believed to be open to working in the Premier League and sees the Gunners as an attractive proposition.
Valverde has done a fine job at Athletic despite working under the all-Basque restraints at the club but has been strongly rumoured to be ready to leave the club this summer.
The 53-year-old’s contract expires at the end of the season and he is yet to extend his current deal, although Barca have recently denied they have made a move for the Athletic boss.
- Wilshere Open To Leaving Arsenal For West Ham
- Arsenal Close To Agreeing New Deal With Ozil
- Arsenal Reject £16m Chambers Bid From Crystal Palace
Wenger’s future, meanwhile, remain uncertain despite rumours of a two-year offer being on the table, with the Frenchman consistently refusing to announce his intentions.
His stock at the club could hardly be lower at the moment, particularly following Monday’s defeat to Crystal Palace which leaves Arsenal’s top four hopes in some jeopardy.
Massimiliano Allegri has appeared to be the favourite to replace Wenger, should he depart, but Valverde is an interesting option who may appeal to fans who are thoroughly disillusioned with Wenger currently.