KEY POINTS

  • Arsenal is closing in on the transfer of Granit Xhaka to AS Roma
  • Xhaka was supposedly included in Gunners' proposed swap deal with Galdbach involving Denis Zakaria
  • Zakaria was likened by his teammate to Zinedine Zidane

Arsenal could be closing in on a major transfer deal that might see them losing a top prospect.

The Gunners have got their sights on a few prospects this summer. Among the names being mentioned is Bundesliga star Denis Zakaria, 90min reported.

Arsenal has moved up a notch in its pursuit of Zakaria, and the report said the club had discussed a potential swap deal involving Granit Xhaka.

Zakaria has been viewed by Arsenal as a cheaper but better option than Xhaka, and a deal was expected to progress, the report added.

However, Arsenal might face a major stumbling block in signing Zakaria as Xhaka--the club’s bargaining chip--is now rumored to be headed to AS Roma, Football.london reported.

International Business Times could not independently verify this information.

Xhaka has agreed to a five-year contract with AS Roma in what will be Arsenal’s first major business transaction this summer.

After weeks of constant communication with Mourinho, the two-time Swiss Super League champion has finally decided to join the renowned manager, the report noted.

Prior to being linked to the Serie A side, Xhaka revealed his thoughts on a potential return to Gladbach, the club he played for from 2012-2016.

According to the 28-year-old, he still has a contract with Arsenal and he is living happily with his family in London.

“There are always rumors at the end of the season, that’s for sure,” Xhaka told RP Online. “But I still have a two-year contract in London [with Arsenal] and I am very happy with my family here. First of all, I’m looking at a successful Euros with the national team.”

Xhaka played his last five seasons with Arsenal. He became one of Mikel Arteta’s most active players and the Gunners boss never doubted his “commitment” to always play at his best.

"Since I've been here he has always shown that,” Arteta said of Xhaka in December. “That's why I've been really supportive of him.”

"He made a mistake like we all do, but his commitment and his character and how much he wants to fight for this club and this team is unquestionable,” he continued.

Granit Xhaka Granit Xhaka, right, made his first appearance in an Arsenal shirt against the MLS All-Stars. Photo: Getty Images

Arsenal’s latest stance on Zakaria is yet to be known. However, should the Gunners decide to still pursue the Gladbach star, the club could be looking at signing a player who is likened to Zinedine Zidane.

“It’s not easy to compare [Zakaria] to the greats of the past, but he combines many qualities that were really defined by Michel Platini and Zinedine Zidane,” Zakaria’s Gladbach teammate Yann Sommer told the Bundesliga’s website.