Arsenal are the frontrunners to sign the Primeira Liga’s top goalscorer Victor Gyokeres for an enormous fee, reports suggest

Gyokeres has recorded an astonishing 36 goals and 14 assists in all competitions for Sporting, after he was signed for a modest £20million from Coventry City in the summer.

Chelsea are understood to have a long-standing interest in the striker, attempting to sign him in January for £73m. Sporting, though, are adamant that any offers must meet their sky-high release clause of £85m (€100m).

Head coach Ruben Amorim said of Chelsea’s offer: “Obviously I was informed of the news. As soon as they said it was €85m (£73m), I thought ‘that’s not enough’. His release clause is €100m. I’m not worried.”

Now, according to Portuguese outlet A Bola, Arsenal are leading contenders to sign the 25-year-old. Still, they must be prepared to front the full £85m for him. Bayern Munich, PSG and top clubs in Spain and Italy are also reported to have shown interest in Gyokeres.

Speaking to the Swedish press about his links to other clubs while he was on international duty, Gyokeres downplayed these claims. He said: “I don’t think much about it now actually, I want to win the league and the cup with Sporting – that’s where I’m putting all my energy and strength.

“It’s a sign that I’ve been performing well, but it’s not something I take too seriously. It’s just speculation, but it’s good and fun to talk about. We’ll see what happens in the summer, I don’t know what will happen. But I really like Sporting and don’t feel stressed at all for what’s to come.”

Gyokeres was also part of a strong campaign for Coventry that saw the Sky Blues reach the Championship playoff final, where they would lose on penalties to Luton Town. The Swede hit the back of the net 22 times for Coventry last season, and was the league’s second-highest goalscorer.

Gyokeres’ agents will discuss his situation with Sporting in April, with reports suggesting that his release clause could be further raised to a staggering £103m.

These numbers would eclipse the £100m figure suggested by Thomas Frank for Brentford striker Ivan Toney, whom Arsenal was strongly linked to in the January transfer window. It has been suggested though that the Englishman will cost closer to £60m this summer, when he will only have 12 months left on his deal with the Bees.

Arsenal have now cooled their interest in Toney, according to widespread reports, though he is still a target for Chelsea, Tottenham Hotspur and West Ham United.