Arsenal came close to the signing of Hamza Mendyl on deadline day, but the deal fell through over work permit issues, according to reports.
Moroccan outlet DM Sport report that the LOSC Lille left-back even travelled to London to try and complete his transfer to Arsenal. However, in the end it was too complicated to finalise the deal in time, since the Morocco international doesn’t have a European passport.
Given DM Sport are pretty much the only outlet reporting that the transfer got this close to completion, whether you believe the story rests on whether you trust them or not.
With a smaller deal like this though, it’s always possible it slips under the radar of the bigger outlets, in the same way Matteo Guendouzi’s move did until it was practically done. I wouldn’t write this rumour off completely, particularly as injuries mean Arsenal could use an extra left-back right now.
Mendyl properly broke into the Lille first team for the first time last season. He had to work his way into the side, but by the end of the campaign he was on the back of a run of six league starts in seven games. Add to that 13 caps for Morocco and you can see why the 20-year-old is starting to catch the eye.
We’ll have to wait and see if Arsenal go back in the January window, but it’ll likely largely depend on Nacho Monreal’s form and Sead Kolasinac’s recovery from injury.