Real alert for Reyes as Arsenal start talks with agent

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The Independent Online

Jose Antonio Reyes' agent has met with Arsenal to discuss the size of the fee they would require in any future transfer deal, according to reports in Spain.

Jose Antonio Reyes' agent has met with Arsenal to discuss the size of the fee they would require in any future transfer deal, according to reports in Spain.

Reyes' representative, Jesus Rodriguez de Moya, is reported to have met the Arsenal vice-chairman, David Dein, in the last few days with the objective of agreeing a price which the club would accept in order for the Spain international to leave.

Reyes, who joined Arsenal for £10.5m in January last year from Seville, is believed to be unsettled at Arsenal after failing to adapt to life in England. He was the victim of a hoax telephone call from a Spanish radio station earlier in the season in which he admitted he would relish a return to Spain, and in particular to Real Madrid.

Real are set for a major overhaul of their playing staff in the summer with another trophy-less season now a distinct possibility, and the winger remains among their top targets.

Reyes' former manager at Seville, Joaquin Caparros, is one of those convinced the forward will sign for Real. "Reyes has the profile to play for Real Madrid," he said. "He has a lot of quality and I see him in the short term at Real Madrid."

Reyes' team-mate Gilberto Silva is hoping to return to the Arsenal first team following the international break after making a successful comeback from injury. The Brazilian has been injured for six months with a back problem, but played 65 minutes for the club's reserves against Chelsea on Monday.

Gilberto is unlikely to be considered for Arsenal's Premiership trip to Blackburn on Saturday but he is determined to back in contention for the FA Cup semi-final against Rovers on 16 April.

The 28-year-old has happy memories of Cardiff's Millennium Stadium after scoring on his debut in the 2002 Community Shield against Liverpool and is hoping he can play another major role there.

Gilberto said: "I have 10 more days to train with the team before international week. So I think I will be 100 per cent fit for the semi-final. After that I can train some more and try to improve. I want to play to help the team. I have good memories of the Millennium Stadium from my debut. It's a big stadium and I enjoy playing there.

"In the Champions' League we saw the chance to play in the final and then it was gone," he added. "Now the FA Cup is very important for us."

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