North London giants Arsenal have been handed a huge blow in their quest to sign the Manchester United duo of Juan Manuel Mata and Phil Jones.
This is because the three-time European champions have opened contract talks with Mata and Phil Jones.
Both players from top four rivals Manchester United have been linked with a transfer to the Gunners but it appears that the Red Devils are keen on retaining their services beyond the current season.
Spanish international midfielder Juan Mata is in the last year of his current Manchester United contract having signed a four-and-a-half year deal when he joined from rivals Chelsea in January 2014 in a reported club-record deal worth around £37.1m.
With his long-term future uncertain, the 30-year-old has been linked with a transfer to former club Valencia as well as a move to the Emirates Stadium with the Gunners.
Arsenal manager Unai Emery was said to be interested in reuniting with Mata whom he worked with at Valencia between 2008 and 2011.
Phil Jones has also been touted as a possible Arsenal signing with less than a year left on his contract at Manchester United.
The England international centre back was also linked with a move to North London side Tottenham Hotspur but he’s almost certain to stay at Old Trafford after the club opened contract talks with him.