Arsenal and Manchester City are set to go head-to-head to sign Jose Gaya from Valencia in the summer

According to a report in The Sun, Arsenal and Manchester City are set to battle each other in the summer transfer window in order to land Spanish left-back Jose Gaya from Valencia.

Gaya has progressed remarkably since rising through the ranks at the fabled Valencia academy before making grade in the first team setup. The young Spaniard made such an impression at his coaches at the club that he made his senior debut at the nascent age of 17.

Five years on and he has established himself as one of the most exciting young prospects in Europe. And even though Valencia have been struggling in the bottom half of the La Liga table for the last two seasons, Gaya has been one of the few shining lights for his side.

This season, the 21-year-old has notched up 27 appearances across all competitions for Los Che, and has largely been dependable at the back, while also chipping in with two assists. And although, he has not produced a big attacking returns, Gaya has often been a menacing presence in the final third.

Set for an English summer? (Photo courtesy - Manuel Queimadelos Alonso/Getty Images)

Set for an English summer? (Photo courtesy – Manuel Queimadelos Alonso/Getty Images)

Thus, it comes as no surprise that two of the biggest clubs in England have turned their attentions towards the Spain under-21 international. Arsenal and Manchester City are interested in signing Gaya, and are set to go head-to-head for him in the summer transfer window.

Arsenal have been long-time admirers of Gaya’s talents and in need to sign a top quality left-back. That is because Nacho Monreal has shown signs of age catching up to him this season after being a consistent presence at the back for the Gunners.

Monreal’s understudy, Kieran Gibbs has never been inconsistent for Arsenal whenever given an opportunity and there are no signs of a renewal on offer with his deal set to run out at the end of the season. So, in all likelihood, Arsenal look set to sign a left-back in the summer.

City, too, have been monitoring Gaya’s progress for a long-time now, and are set to make a move for him in the summer transfer window. Indeed, an ageing backline has caused a lot of problems for Pep Guardiola’s side this season, and defensive reinforcements are on the cards.

The left side of the City defence, in particular, has Guardiola sweating over summer recruitments, with Gael Clichy and Aleksandar Kolarov both over the age of 30 and past their best. While Kolarov is expected to keep his place in the squad thanks to his versatility, Clichy is likely to leave the club in the summer.

At 21, Gaya practically has his entire career ahead of him and can be a long-term solution as left-back for both Arsenal and City. At the same time, he will also add a lot of pace and sprightly energy to their backlines, something that both the sides are dearly in need of.

Gaya still has more than three years left to run on his current deal with Valencia, and he is likely to command a sizable transfer fee. It remains to be seen how things develop in the coming weeks. For now, though, Arsenal and City are vying for Gaya’s signature and he could well be on the move in the summer.

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