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Real Madrid are reported to be lining up a œ35m bid for Arsenal duo Patrick Vieira and Robert Pires.

According to The Evening Standard, the reining European champions are waiting to step in if contract talks betweenthe French internationals and Arsenal broke down.

Vieira and Pires each have one year left on their current contracts – although both have previously stated that they want to remain at Highbury.

Pires was a target for Real before opting to join Arsenal in 2000 and there has been constant speculation linking Vieira with a move to the Bernabeu.

Arsenal plan to conclude negotiations with the both players in the summer. Failure to reach agreement will almost certainly lead to the pair leaving Highbury as the club will not allow either to become free agents when their current deals expire.

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