Arsenal will reportedly provide Mikel Arteta with money to spend in January in the hopes he can fix their defence and Dayot Upamecano is once again on top of their list.
With Calum Chambers seeming like he has done significant damage to his knee and Shkodran Mustafi, Sokatis and David Luiz more trouble than they are worth, Arsenal are in desperate need of fit and competent central defenders.
There has been talk about recalling William Saliba in January but it seems that is not possible so Arsenal are now reportedly looking at Dayot Upamecano, a 21-year-old who was considered last summer only to be ruled out for being too expensive.
Six months later and the RB Leipzig player only has 18 months left on his current deal and his club have not been able to convince him to sign a new one. Arsenal might therefore be hoping he will be cheaper than the €40m – €80m they were quoted in the summer. The numbers varied quite a bit, depending on where you did your reading.
Desperation and a January transfer window, however, have rarely seen a price lowered.
After spending almost £90m net last summer, and having to pay Unai Emery and his staff go-away money, Stan Kroenke will be asked to put his hand in his pocket once again in the coming weeks.
It is unlikely to go down well if he doesn’t, especially given our current state.
It’s perhaps worth noting at this point that Arsenal were said to be considering a bid for Upamecano not long before before Unai Emery was sacked, so he definitely seems to be a club target rather than an Arteta-specific one.
Alongside William Saliba, who will only be 19 by the time he arrives at the club in the summer, Arsenal could have their first-choice centreback pairing set for a decade should they land Upamecano.
The ‘should’ here, however, is a rather large one.