The French midfielder has recently emerged as one of the Gunners’ top summer targets, with Arsene Wenger having been impressed by his displays for the Saints last term.
With Mikel Arteta now coming to the end of his career and a deal for Sami Khedira likely to be too pricey, Schneiderlin is understood to be at the forefront of the Londoners’ hit list.
Reports suggest that Arsenal are in talks with the South Coast club, which may be accelerated by the player’s own wishes to make the switch.
The silky enforcer would become the fourth high profile name to leave St Mary’s Stadium this window, with Luke Shaw having joined Manchester United and Rickie Lambert and Adam Lallana now both at Liverpool.
Southampton have no real need to sell, but with the situation as it is they are thought to be demanding £18m.
Arsenal value the 24-year-old at around £15m, but they may increase their offer to get him to the Emirates Stadium.
Dejan Lovren is also angling for a move away from the South Coast.