Arsenal may have been handed encouragement in the race for Manchester City wideman Raheem Sterling this summer.
The winger, who was pivotal for England as the Three Lions reached the Euro 2020 final, has been linked with an exit from the Etihad Stadium.
Previous reports have suggested that City boss Pep Guardiola is willing to sell the winger as he eyes a squad revamp.
Aston Villa playmaker Jack Grealish already appears on his way to the Etihad Stadium, leaving Sterling and fellow winger Riyad Mahrez as surplus to requirements, especially with two years remaining on their respective deals.
Arsenal have been linked with the duo as a consequence, and the Gunners might well have been handed some slight optimism over the prospect of a deal.
As per the reports, there is no real panic over the winger’s future with the current Premier League champions but the original intention was to commit the 26-year-old to an extended deal before the start of the new Premier League season, which is less than two weeks away.
Sterling also reportedly could be waiting to see how he fits into Guardiola’s plans with the arrival of Grealish expected.
The winger has previously been full of praise for current Arsenal boss Mikel Arteta, who he also worked with during the Spaniard’s time at the Etihad Stadium.
“[Arteta is] a person that had a lot of say here [at Man City]. The manager trusted him here and he had a lot of influence on the players here and the team as well,” he said.
“So I knew once he went into Arsenal that it would be a great opportunity for him but also he would definitely implement what he wanted to bring in.
“And he’s a person that will put his foot down and not let things slide as you can see with the boys at Arsenal.
“They know if they don’t run they are most likely not going to play.”
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