ARSENAL are leading the race to sign Atletico Madrid star Joao Felix, according to reports.
The Portugal striker has caught the eye at the World Cup and several Premier League clubs are interested in signing him.
AlamyArsenal have emerged as favourites to sign Joao Felix[/caption]
Arsenal are on the lookout for a striker following the injury to Gabriel Jesus and like the look of Felix.
And the Gunners are believed to be frontrunners in the race to sign the former Benfica star, report Marca.
Manchester United, Chelsea and Aston Villa are also reportedly keen on the 23-year-old.
Felix has fallen out of favour and out of love with hardline boss Diego Simeone and wants a move, despite having three-and-a-half years of his current deal remaining.
Atletico are keen to cut their losses on their record signing and the Spaniards’ chief executive Miguel Angel Gil could even be open to a loan deal in January, with an option to buy clause.
Gil told Spanish broadcasters TVE: “I would love him to continue, but that is not the player’s idea.”
Felix’s agent Jorge Mendes has close links with Villa co-owner Sawiris after the Portuguese super-agent helped broker Emery’s recent move to Villa Park.
Mendes is pushing Villa as a realistic option for the hitman, who cost Atletico an eye-watering £113million when they signed him from Benfica in 2019.
However Villa boss Unai Emery is aware of Felix’s desire to play Champions League football on an annual basis and is drawing up contingency plans in case the striker snubs his advances.
There are also concerns that Felix does not want to live in Birmingham or play for a club of Villa’s stature.