Atletico Madrid are reportedly monitoring the uncertain future of Alexis Sanchez at Arsenal ahead of making a summer move to secure his services. Chelsea, Juventus, Bayern Munich and Paris Saint Germain have also been heavily linked with the former Barcelona star in recent times but Spanish publication AS claims that Diego Simeone's side will join the race if their current Fifa transfer embargo is lifted.
Sanchez, 28, was already said to be on the radar of Simeone when Barcelona decided to put him on the market, in the summer of 2014.
Then Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers also tried to secure his signature but the Chile international eventually decided to join Arsenal after the Gunners agreed to pay Barcelona around £35m to lure him to the Emirates Stadium.
Sanchez has since become a key figure for Arsene Wenger but his long-term future at Arsenal has come under scrutiny in recent times as his current contract will expire in the summer of 18. This means that, unless he signs a new deal, the coming summer will be the last chance for the north Londoners to recoup some money for his sale.
The forward recently said that he hopes to stay at Arsenal until the end of his contract but adding that he wants to play in London for a team with "a winning mentality" – adding fuel to recent speculation linking him with a move to Chelsea.
"I am happy in London and hope to finish my contract there [at Arsenal]," Sanchez said. "I'd like to stay in the city but with a team that is winning things, that has a winning mentality.
Wenger has since tried to play down those talks, insisting they don't need to sell players to their rivals anymore. But the Gunners could have an alternative option to cash-in on the Chilean international amid reports in AS claiming that Simeone also wants him at Atletico Madrid.
AS suggests that his return to Spain won't be easy as Los Colchoneros can't compete economically with the likes of Chelsea, PSG, Bayern or Juventus - but the La Liga giants may have an advantage over the Blues as Arsenal would probably rather selling him away than to a direct rival.
The publication adds that Atletico will be ready to fight for his services if the final fee is around €40m (£34.6m, $43m) - the same amount that they paid to sign Kevin Gameiro from Sevilla last summer.