Arsenal are reportedly scouting Southampton left-back Luke Shaw, as manager Arsene Wenger looks to recruit defensive reinforcements. Shaw joins Liverpool youngster Raheem Sterling on a list of potential recruits for the north London club, according to the Telegraph, as they try to revive a season that has gone horribly wrong. Shaw and Sterling broke into their respective clubs' first teams this season.

Luke Shaw

Shaw, 17, was linked with a move to the Emirates in the summer. The London club's first choice left-back, Kieran Gibbs, has had another injury-hit start to the season and back-up Andre Santos' performances have come in for severe criticism, meaning a new left-back is rapidly becoming a necessity.

Wenger has recruited Theo Walcott and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain from the Southampton academy in the past and will be confident of an edge in negotiations, both with the St Mary's club and rivals such as Chelsea. The report adds the Blues are also interested in the Saints' left-back, with Ashley Cole set to leave Stamford Bridge at the end of the season.

Sterling in Focus

Raheem Sterling

Meanwhile, England international Sterling, who turned 18 last week, has yet to sign a senior contract at Anfield, despite protracted negotiations between the Reds and his representatives. Liverpool have reportedly offered the teenager £20,000 per week but the youngster, who has made 15 league starts this term, has so far stalled progress.

Wenger is an admirer of Sterling's skills and has reportedly considered offering the Emirates' own contract rebel, Theo Walcott, as bait to land the highly rated Sterling. Meanwhile, The Sun claims Premier League leaders Manchester United have now joined the race to sign Sterling.

The youngster has enjoyed a solid season with the Anfield club so far this term, cementing a first team spot and earning a senior England cap. Reds' boss Brendan Rodgers has already warned the player and his representatives about valuing money over personal and footballing growth.

"He has played more games than he could have dreamed of this season, both in the Premier League and the Europa League. So I would think, if I am Raheem Sterling and his agents, I would look to tie it up very quickly," the former Swansea City manager told Sky Sports, adding, "This contract won't be the biggest contract of his life. It is when he actually achieves something. If you are 17 and are playing regularly, you would be very foolish not to commit yourself very quickly."