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Could Chelsea star Thibaut Courtois inadvertently aid Arsenal’s pursuit of Jan Oblak?

Atletico Madrid's Slovenian goalkeeper Jan Oblak looks on during the Spanish league football match RCD Espanyol vs Club Atletico de Madrid at the RCDE Stadium in Cornella de Llobregat on...

Arsenal have been linked with Atletico Madrid’s Jan Oblak.

Cristian ÔPortu' Portugues of Gerona beats Jan Oblak of Atletico de Madrid to score his team's opening goalduring the La Liga match between Atletico Madrid and Girona at estadio Wanda...

According to Spanish publication Mundo Deportivo, Arsenal have highlighted Atletico Madrid’s highly-rated goalkeeper Jan Oblak as their number one summer transfer target.

The 25-year-old has a reported £88.7 million release clause, and it’s thought that Diego Simeone’s side would fight tooth and nail to keep the player in the Spanish capital in spite of his contract situation.

Having said that, Chelsea goalkeeper Thibaut Courtois could play a key part in any potential deal.

The Belgium international spent three seasons on loan at Atletico, helping the club break up the Barcelona and Real Madrid dominance whilst also winning La Liga, the Europa League and the Copa Del Rey.

Thibaut Courtois of Chelsea celebrates victory after the full time whistle after the UEFA Champions League group C match between Atletico Madrid and Chelsea FC at Estadio Wanda...

Courtois became a popular figure at Los Colchoneros, and it’s likely the club would have signed him on a permanent deal had it not been for Chelsea’s decision to make him number one at Stamford Bridge.

Despite going on to become Chelsea’s regular ahead of Petr Cech, Courtois has admitted in a recent interview his heart is still in Madrid and with his family based in the Spanish capital a return would make sense.

While his initial quotes, reported by Belgian newspaper Sport, were in response to alleged interest from Real Madrid, it’s a situation which would no doubt have caused Atletico to look on with interest.

Atletico Madrid's Slovenian goalkeeper Jan Oblak poses after receiving the 'Zamora' award  in Barcelona on December 18, 2017.

Diego Simeone knows the player well, and a chance to re-sign him ahead of rivals Madrid would be wise considering there are no guarantees Oblak will stick around should a club activate his release clause.

A deal which would see Courtois move to Atletico and Oblak to Arsenal wouldn’t cost Atleti any extra, they would replace one world class goalkeeper with another, and they would prevent rivals Real Madrid from strengthening a problem area and possibly force them to spend the summer pursuing Manchester United’s David De Gea.

Arsenal’s Petr Cech is on the wane, and signing a younger, fitter and more athletic goalkeeper will be high on their list of priorities and Oblak is without question among the world’s best right now.

The 6ft 3inch Slovenian is an imposing figure between the sticks, and at 25 he has a good decade of top-level football ahead of him.

Atletico Madrid's Slovenian goalkeeper Jan Oblak saves a ball during the Spanish league football match RC Celta de Vigo vs Club Atletico de Madrid at the Balaidos stadium in Vigo on...

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