Serie A giants leading race for Walcott.
Juventus are lining up a £90,000-a-week deal to persuade Theo Walcott to join them in January.
Arsenal fear they may have to cash-in on Walcott next month following his refusal to sign a new deal at the club.
Although Arsene Wenger insists he will not sell the England international in January, he has gone back on his word before, after claiming he would not sell both Cesc Fabregas and Samir Nasri in the same window.
He buckled under the pressure with interest from Barcelona and Manchester City and sold the pair – and following Robin Van Persie’s exit to Manchester United this summer, another big name star is set to leave the Emirates.
Walcott has refused to commit the club beyond his current terms and United are keen as well – but Juve want him too.
The Serie A side lost out to United for Van Persie but are ready to beat them this time, with a deal around £90,000-a-week, and a guaranteed place up front, in the offing.
Walcott will be available for as little as £8m next month as this is the final time Arsenal would be able to command a fee.
As Theo Walcott edges closer to becoming yet another big name player to leave Arsenal, the Gunners may at least be spared the embarrassment of the forward joining a Premier League rival.
Juventus have long been linked with Walcott and, according to the source, the Serie A giants are preparing a bumper deal to bring the England international to Italy.
Walcott’s twin gripes at the Emirates are the club’s refusal to pay him more than £75,000 a week and boss Arsene Wenger’s reluctance to hand him a striking role – rather than a place on the wing.
Juve’s £90,000 per week offer should satisfy Walcott’s wage demands, while there is little doubt that the Italians are seeking a new striker.
The Turin club tried and failed to sign a whole host of Premier League forwards during the summer, including Robin van Persie, Luis Suarez and Dimitar Berbatov…but ended up with Arsenal’s Nicklas Bendtner on loan.
It remains to be seen if boss Antonio Conte has the faith in Walcott to play the former Southampton man up-front, particuarly as the Italian reportedly admires Walcott’s directness in wide-areas.
Either way, a fresh start in Turin must be a tempting prospect for Walcott, who has arguably never fulfilled his obvious potential in North London, and is facing an fierce battle for his England place with a rejuvenated Aaron Lennon and teenager Raheem Sterling.
While Arsene Wenger remains adamant that he will not sell Walcott in January, the Frenchman will surely be attacted by the prospect of offloading Walcott to Italy, rather than face losing the star to the likes of Manchester United, Liverpool or Man City – all of whom are monitoring the situation.
Download the free fanatix app now for iPhone: Sport news, social features and more!
Follow us on Twitter, Facebook and Tumblr: