EMILE SMITH ROWE is rated a surprise Aston Villa target after not yet signing a new Arsenal contract.
The England Under-21 midfielder is thought to be close to agreeing a five-year Gunners' deal after his best season so far.
But the Telegraph suggest other clubs, including Villa, are monitoring his situation.
Smith Rowe, 20, looked sharp and creative as he hit four goals in 31 games this term
And it's been claimed he is one of only around half a dozen Arsenal players who boss Mikel Arteta is especially keen to retain.
Journalist Fabrizio Romano stated last month all parties involved in Smith Rowe's contract negotiations are "optimistic" it can soon be sorted out.
His current deal runs until 2023 but if he stays he will get a pay rise and much longer contract.
And before talks began in April Arteta said: “We are going to have that discussion.
“I think Emile has earned the right to look at that situation because of the performances that he has produced.
“He’s very much engaged and wants to continue with us, that’s for sure.”
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