Jose Mourinho targets Arsenal stalwart after being ‘priced out’ of move for Manchester United star

The former Chelsea and Tottenham Hotspur manager is keen on taking one current Gunner to Serie A.

Roma manager Jose Mourinho is reportedly considering a move for Arsenal defender Hector Bellerin after a deal for Manchester United’s Aaron Wan-Bissaka proved too costly.

The former Spurs boss is set to be handed a significant transfer fund as he looks to build on his side’s recent Europa Conference League Final win against Dutch side Feyenoord.

Mourinho was said to be interested in taking Red Devils star Wan-Bissaka to the Italian capital but was told his former club want to recoup the majority of the £50million they handed over to Crystal Palace for the defender.

That would prove too expensive for Roma, who would only be interested in a loan deal for the full-back.

That has led Mourinho to turn his attentions towards Gunners star Bellerin, according to Italian outlet Gazetta Dello Sport.

Arsenal are said to be looking for a fee of around £18million for the Spanish international after he returned to the Emirates Stadium following a season-long loan at La Liga side Real Betis.

The 27-year-old has made over 180 appearances for the Gunners since making his senior debut in a Capital One Cup win against West Bromwich Albion.

However, he spent the last year with Betis and helped Los Verdiblancos secure a place in next season’s Europa League with a fifth place finish in La Liga.

More significantly, Bellerin was part of the Betis side that claimed a penalty shoot-out win against Valencia to lift the Copa del Rey for the first time since a 2005 final win against Osasuna.

His future remains up in the air but the defender has made his stance clear recently.

Speaking last month, Bellerin said: "I have made my position clear to both club. Now we have two months to get the best deal for all three parties.

"I have always said, I made an effort to come here and I am willing to make every effort to keep it going because it is my home and I am happy.

"It is also true that I had very nice moments in London, in England. Arsenal has given a lot, the opportunity to be a professional. If I leave, it will be difficult, but hopefully everything goes as we want."

Real Betis may be his preferred destination but Mourinho could offer Bellerin an alternative route if he follows up his reported interest in a permanent or loan deal over the coming weeks.