The former England international believes that Arsenal would be demanding a fee close to Paul Pogba’s record-breaking figure if he were to join the exodus to China

Arsenal would be looking to get around £80 million for Alexis Sanchez if they are unable to tie him to a new contract and sell him to a Chinese club, claims former England international Ray Wilkins.

Talk of interest from the Far East in the Chile international is building, with reports suggesting that big-money deals are about to be tabled.

RUMOURS: Alexis’s MEGA Hebei offer

Hebei China, who are coached by former Manchester City boss Manuel Pellegrini, are said to be preparing an offer that would see Sanchez earn around £500,000-a-week.

The Gunners would be unable to match that salary and may see their hand forced if the interest from afar turns the head of a key figure at Emirates Stadium.

They would be handsomely rewarded in any transfer agreement, though, with Wilkins suggesting that the figures involved would be close to those which saw Manchester United land Paul Pogba in a record-breaking deal over the summer.

He told talkSPORT: “If Arsenal are looking and the Chinese are coming in with those kind of offers, I reckon that’s £80m for Sanchez.

“That’s Arsenal’s get out.”

Wilkins, though, concedes that the Gunners need to do all they can to keep Sanchez in north London.

‘Alexis and Ozil deserve bonkers money’

He added: “He epitomises what a footballer should be. His work ethic, his ability is superb.

“He’s almost become irreplaceable for Arsenal. Wenger plays him when he just gets back from Chile.

“He’s now become so important. I think he’s brilliant, the guy’s great.”

Sanchez has netted 11 Premier League goals this season, with that return seeing him sat joint-top of the scoring charts alongside Chelsea’s Diego Costa.

Arsenal are fully aware of his importance to the cause, and Arsene Wenger has reiterated his confidence that fresh terms can be ironed out with the South American and fellow forward Mesut Ozil.

Wenger: Money there for Alexis & Ozil

He said: “I feel today that we can give financial satisfaction and support ambition and values that make them happy. Before the financial gap was too big to keep our players and we could not compete, we had to sell players.

“These players have 18 months [left on their] contract and I don’t see why there’s urgency to have questions.”