According to Spanish newspaper Sport, Isco could potentially be set for a departure from Real Madrid in the January transfer window – and Arsenal have been linked with a move for the Spaniard’s services in the past.

It’s clear that Zinedine Zidane prefers a number of attacking options to Isco and the 24-year-old needs to be playing on a regular basis if he’s to recapture the form that merited a switch to the Bernabeú from Malaga three seasons ago.

Since then, he has shown flashes of individual brilliance, but they’ve been few and far between as he’d struggled to start regularly for Los Blancos in league and domestic competitions. James Rodríguez and Mateo Kovacic, as well as Marco Asensio are all midfield options that have been preferred ahead of Isco whose development has stalled in recent months.

He’s only played 17 minutes of La Liga football this term and his other appearance was during their UEFA Supercup victory over Sevilla, where he was substituted in the second-half.

Left out of their squad to face Sporting in the Champions League group stages this past week, it was reported he had an ankle problem but has nonetheless sparked speculation over his future at the club.

SAN SEBASTIAN, SPAIN - AUGUST 21: Isco of Real Madrid duels for the ball with Xabier Prieto of Real Sociedad during the La Liga match between Real Sociedad de Futbol and Real Madrid at Estadio Anoeta on August 21, 2016 in San Sebastian, Spain. (Photo by Juan Manuel Serrano Arce/Getty Images)
SAN SEBASTIAN, SPAIN – AUGUST 21: Isco of Real Madrid duels for the ball with Xabier Prieto of Real Sociedad during the La Liga match between Real Sociedad de Futbol and Real Madrid at Estadio Anoeta on August 21, 2016 in San Sebastian, Spain. (Photo by Juan Manuel Serrano Arce/Getty Images)

Isco, whose preferred position is behind the striker as a number ten, can also play on either wing – but he’d face fierce competition for a starting spot at Arsenal if he were to join.

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Signing him could suggest Sánchez gradually playing more as a central striker with the current experiment having mixed results thus far, but it’d also be a signal of intent too and Isco would benefit from having the likes of Cazorla and Özil playing alongside him.

It would seem, however, that Isco would be a midfielder too many, even for Arsene Wenger, who has had to send Jack Wilshere out on loan as he doesn’t have space for him.