Arsenal said to be short in their pursuit of Villareal defender Gabriel.
The Brazilian defender was in action for the La Liga side on Wednesday night, despite questions earlier in the day as to whether he would play.
The Express had claimed yesterday a deal had been agreed, citing unnamed sources in Spain.
Spanish journalist Guillem Balague last night moved to correct these reports, stating via Twitter that Arsenal and Villareal had not agreed a valuation, even with the Spanish club willing to accept less than the release clause in his deal.
As @VictorFranch has just explained, and despite Spanish sources claiming all done with Gabriel/Arsenal, it is not done at all— Guillem Balague (@GuillemBalague) January 21, 2015
Villarreal sells Gabriel for €20m of his buy out clause (and even less!). But Arsenal not even close to that figure. Negotiations continue— Guillem Balague (@GuillemBalague) January 21, 2015
The SkySports and AS journalist was referencing a tweet from fellow Spanish journalist Victor Franch, hours before last night's game, which stated: "At this time it points to Gabriel starting tonight against Getafe. Arsenal Arsenal is done not yet. At least not until they pay what Villareal want."
The good news for Arsenal is the negotiations are ongoing and there is time to close a deal ahead of the February 2 deadline, and if it does break down, there is still time to pursue alternatives.