at the Union Buildings in Pretoria
London - Arsenal will have to stretch their growing financial muscle to the limit to sign World Cup winner Sami Khedira.
Following years of frugal transfer dealings, the club are starting to reap the benefits of their long-term financial strategy.
They have already signed Alexis Sanchez from Barcelona in a £30million deal, while the £11m arrival of Mathieu Debuchy should be confirmed this week.
Their next target is a holding midfielder and Khedira, who missed Sunday’s final after suffering an injury in the warm-up, is a strong possibility. Talks over a move for the Real Madrid star are ongoing, although some members of the Arsenal hier-archy are concerned about the potential cost of the deal.
The fee for the 27-year-old, who has 12 months to run on his Madrid contract, would be in excess of £20m. In addition, Khedira is understood to want £150,000 per week, a package that would make him Arsenal’s highest paid player.
Manager Arsene Wenger is also interested in Bayer Leverkusen midfielder Lars Bender, who would be a cheaper option, while Southampton’s Morgan Schneiderlin is also being considered.
Arsenal will also try to complete the signing of Atletico Madrid right back Javier Manquillo this week and maintain an interest in Southampton youngster Calum Chambers.
Meanwhile, Liverpool will take their spending towards £60m today when Lazar Markovic is confirmed as Brendan Rodgers’ fourth summer signing.
The Serbia international arrived on Merseyside on Sunday ahead of a medical after Liverpool triggered a £20m release clause in his Benfica contract.
Markovic was a target long before it became inevitable that Luis Suarez would join Barcelona and Liverpool will land one of the most highly regarded young players in Europe. The 20-year-old played a crucial role in helping Benfica win the Portuguese title last season.
He has agreed a long-term contract and joins Rickie Lambert, Adam Lallana and Emre Can as new arrivals at Anfield.
Markovic, a left-sided attacker, will not be Liverpool’s final signing of the summer, with Belgium striker Divock Origi close to agreeing a move and a deal for Sevilla left back Alberto Moreno is also on the cards.
Liverpool are considering moves for, among others, Swansea pair Wilfried Bony and Ben Davies, QPR striker Loic Remy and they have not lost interest in Southampton defender Dejan Lovren.