Arsenal reportedly face competition in their pursuit of Nikola Maksimovic in the form of Spartak Moscow.

Arsenal have allegedly been looking to bring Napoli centre-back, Maksimovic, on board this month. The Gunners have a shortage of centre-backs and, with Per Mertesacker retiring at the end of the season, we need back-up from somewhere.

However, Spartak Moscow are now reportedly in the driver’s seat.

Maksimovic only moved to Napoli from fellow Serie A side Torino in 2016 but has gone on to make just 10 league appearances so far. This is despite costing the Italian club £20m.

BELGRADE, SERBIA – OCTOBER 09: Nikola Maksimovic of Serbia celebrates the victory after FIFA 2018 World Cup Qualifier between Serbia and Georgia at stadium Rajko Mitic on October 9, 2017 in Belgrade. (Photo by Srdjan Stevanovic/Getty Images)

The 26-year-old’s move to Napoli was initially a loan with an obligation to buy, which I bet they’re regretting agreeing to now. He’s only made two Serie A appearances this term.

Napoli are reportedly asking for just under £11m – almost half of what they paid for him. Ouch.

Maksimovic looks likely to go to Spartak Moscow as the Serbia international is apparently keen on a move to Russia.

If the Gunners are going to sign a centre-back this month, it needs to be someone slightly more experienced that Maksimovic. If he’s not good enough to start for Napoli, he shouldn’t be good enough to start for Arsenal.