Report: Atletico Madrid open talks with Arsenal-linked Ilkay Gundogan

Ilkay Gundogan

Atletico Madrid have reportedly begun negotiations with long-time transfer target Borussia Dortmund midfielder Ilkay Gundogan.

According to Germany's Sport Bild, Atletico Madrid have begun formulating their summer transfer wishlist and have already opened negotiations with their top transfer target, Ilkay Gundogan.

Following the long-term contract extension for manager Diego Simeone, Atletico's front office quickly began formulating a plan to make the squad even stronger as their budget grows with every title and sponsor.

After their recent Champions League match against Bayer Leverkusen, Atletico Madrid brass reportedly took the opportunity to reach out to the representative of Borussia Dortmund and German international midfielder Ilkay Gundogan to gauge the player's interest in joining Simeone's ongoing project.

The agent would later confirm that the player is indeed interested in testing his skill in Spain and talks have continued from that point.

However, while Gundogan is willing, it's a matter of if Atletico Madrid are able, as the 24-year-old has been targeted by the likes of Arsenal and Barcelona, according to sources such as the Mirror, which could allow Dortmund to raise their asking price as they try to keep the player for one more year, after supporting him when he was injured off and on over the past two seasons.

Gundogan admitted a month ago that contract negotiations were progressing but have not yet finalised, giving Atletico Madrid the upper hand in the negotiation process.

Gundogan could be seen as the long-term solution in the defensive midfield position, replacing Tiago and Mario Suarez, who is likely to leave this summer.

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