Arsenal are reportedly keeping tabs on Gremio central defender Matheus Simonete Bressaneli - widely known as Bressan - to strengthen their defence, according to reports.

The 21-year-old, who began his career at Juventude before joining Gremio last year, is regarded as one of the most promising young players in Serie A at the moment as he has impressed with his impressive performances – and Gunners' boss Arsene Wenger is interested in bringing the youngster to the Premier League this summer.

Metro claims Arsenal officials have already held talks with Gremio and were so encouraged that they are now planning to send Arsenal's transfer fixer Dick Law to Brazil for further negotiations with Bressan.

Wenger is currently looking for alternatives at full-back as Bacary Sagna has confirmed he will be leaving the club this summer. The 31-year-old was offered a new two-year deal at the Emirates but has rejected it as he wants a three-year contract.

"It is no longer a secret, I am leaving Arsenal, it is a certainty," he told l'Equipe. "Arsenal has made an effort [to keep me], but the discussions did not go in the direction that I wanted," he added.

Given Sagna's imminent departure, Wenger needs reinforcements in that position and Bressan's signature would be ideal for the team as fourth-choice centre-back. Thomas Vermaelen, Lauren Koscielny and Per Mertesacker are the only options for the French coach.

Santos were favourites to secure Bressan's services, but it is thought that the Londoners now lead the race.

However, Arsenal will have to obtain a work permit for the player if a deal is agreed so he could go straight into the first-team next campaign – even though it seems unlikely as the player is yet to play for Brazil, another work permit requirement.