Emile Smith Rowe is said to be “blown away” by Aston Villa’s interest in him as they try and tempt the playmaker to Villa Park.
Arsenal have already knocked back two bids for the 20-year-old but Villa are poised to table further offers.
The Gunners are adamant that Smith Rowe, who became an integral figure at the Emirates last term, will not be sold.
That hasn’t stopped Villa trying their luck however and club chiefs are said to be positive about how talks have developed.
Sporting director Johan Lange and CEO Christian Purslow will both be key figures and the former is encouraged by discussions thus far.
Smith Rowe is set for face-to-face talks with the Arsenal hierarchy in the coming days as they aim to finalise his future plans.
The England U21 star is in control of his destiny however and will have the final say, reports Birmingham Live.
Villa have already added Emi Buendia and Ashley Young and want to continue their summer business.
Dean Smith has invested wisely since getting his side promoted and a midtable finish in their second year back in the top flight underlined their progress.
Smith Rowe saw former team-mate Emiliano Martinez swap the Emirates for Villa Park last year and earn plenty of admirers.
The goalkeeper claimed he was making a step up, despite the gulf in stature between the two clubs, and kept two clean sheets as Villa did the double over Arsenal last term.
Villa’s most recent bid for Smith Rowe, which was knocked back, was £30m.
Their desire to sign the Arsenal man suggests Jack Grealish could be on the move.
Mikel Arteta though is leading an overhaul in north London and will be desperate to retain certain individuals, Smith Rowe being one.
He and Bukayo Saka became mainstays in the starting XI in the second-half of the season and the Gunners boss thinks highly of his playmaker.
Despite that footbal.london claimed recently that there has been little progress in talks regarding Smith Rowe’s future thus far.
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Back in May Arteta stated that the academy graduate could become one of Europe’s elite once he added more goals and assists to his game.
“He’s having an incredible season ever since he started to play in December,” said the Spaniard.
“But he’s scoring his first Premier League goal. An incredible season for a No 10 of Arsenal means he needs to score 15 goals and give 10 assists.
“Then you are right up there with the top guys in Europe and in the league. He’s got the ability to do it but he hasn’t done it.
“We need to stay calm with him, give him the right support and step by step, I think he will be getting there.”