The Mexican international is enjoying an impressive campaign for Real Sociedad, finally realising the potential which once attracted Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger.
Vela joined the Arsenal as a youngster from Mexican side Chivas, but despite more than five years at the club, he never managed to claim proper run in the first-team and, following a number of loan deals, was sold to Real Sociedad in 2012.
In Spain, Vela has been playing as a wide-right forward, and his ability to cut in and shoot, or go on the outside and unleash arguably his biggest asset – the accurate cross.
In 28 La Liga starts this season, the 25-year-old has scored 12 goals and assisted in a further 10 – contributing to more goals than Arsenal's Mesut Ozil, Tomas Rosicky and Lukas Podolski combined.
And Diario Sport has now reported that Real Madrid are looking at signing the former Arsenal star this summer. Real Madrid’s reported interest in Vela is testament to his development.
The report suggests that Real Madrid manager Carlo Ancelotti may try and sell Casimero first, before heading up a deal which could match Vela’s release clause of €30m.
The Spanish giants, however, may face competition for his signature, as Atletico Madrid are also rumoured to be interested in Vela as a possible replacement for Diego Costa, who seems likely to leave the club this summer.
Vela may become another player who Arsenal may yet regret slipping through the net.