Gunners in Arshavin talks
Zenit St Petersburg have confirmed talks are taking place with Arsenal regarding a deal for Andrei Arshavin.
Last Updated: 06/01/09 7:03pm
Zenit St Petersburg have told Sky Sports News that talks are taking place with Arsenal regarding a deal for Andrei Arshavin.
Maxim Mitrofanov, the club's general director, has told Sky Sports News chief news reporter Bryan Swanson that he hopes a deal can be done within the next two weeks.
Russian schemer Arshavin has been looking to leave the Uefa Cup holders in search of a move to a major European league.
He impressed at Euro 2008 and was linked with Arsenal's North London rivals Tottenham Hotspur, along with Spanish giants Barcelona and Real Madrid after the tournament.
However, in recent weeks, speculation concerning a possible January move to Arsenal has increased after he was given permission to discuss his departure from Zenit.
Reports suggest Zenit are demanding a £20million fee for Arshavin, but the Gunners value the 27-year-old at considerably less.
Zenit, though, have told Sky Sports News that they are confident of agreeing a deal to sell the playmaker to Arsenal this month.
Gunners boss Arsene Wenger has been looking to reinforce his squad after losing captain Cesc Fabregas for several months due to a knee injury.
Wenger has previously been coy on any interest in Arshavin, but admitted over the weekend that he was aiming to sign a player of 'special class'.
He also confirmed that availability for the knockout phase of the UEFA Champions League would not be an issue, with Arshavin unable to feature against Roma after appearing in the group stage for Zenit.
Meanwhile, Zenit coach Dick Advocaat is resigned to losing Arshavin during the January transfer window.
Advocaat said: "I am aware that Arsenal are interested, but I don't know any more than that. However, I am expecting Arshavin to leave Zenit for another club.
"He is a top player and he could play for any team and any of the top teams in England, Arsenal, Manchester United, Chelsea or Liverpool.
"He was voted player of the year by the sports writers last season - and we know that they know everything!
"Arshavin played well for us last season, but he didn't play as well as he can. There is still more to come from him and people will see that.
"In principle, I have already bought Arshavin's successor, Danny, because I thought Arshavin was going to leave last year so did Zenit. Danny can play in the same position as Arshavin so we won't be disrupted when he goes."