Cesc Fabregas
Fabregas joined Arsenal from Barcelona in 2003.

AC Milan have emerged as frontrunners in the race to sign Arsenal captain Cesc Fabregas, according to reports from Italy.

Fabregas, 24, has been heavily linked with a return to Barcelona for the past three years but the Rossoneri are now favourites to sign the Spain international after the club agreed to meet Arsenal's demands.

Cristiano Ruiu, of Telelombardia Antennatre, revealed that Fabregas will join the Serie A champions in late August.

"For the last 10 to 15 days, I have to say that sources have told me Mr X is Fabregas," Ruiu told tuttomercatoweb.com.

"He will arrive in late August."

Ruiu was referring to the unnamed transfer target Milan Vice-president Adriano Galliani has mentioned repeatedly this summer.

"If Mr X arrives, he will arrive at the end of August, during the last few days of the mercato. And it will only be one signing," Galliani said earlier this month.

But Ruiu confirmed Milan could now beat Barcelona to the player's signature.

"There are agreements with Arsenal and with the entourage of the player, thanks to the mediation of Mino Raiola, who in these last days, has been in London."