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Arsenal looking to pip Manchester City to Southampton defender - Reports

Newcastle United v Arsenal - Premier League
Newcastle United v Arsenal - Premier League

According to Goal, Arsenal are monitoring Southampton defender Ryan Bertrand and will look to sign the Englishman in the summer. Bertrand has also received attention from Premier League champions Manchester City but it appears that the Emirates will be the more likely destination for the 31-year-old.

Bertrand's contract at Southampton expires in the summer and Saints boss Ralph Hasenhuttl has confirmed that the contract extension offered to the defender was rejected. The Englishman will now be able to leave Southampton as a free agent in the summer if a new deal is not agreed to.

Arsenal are keen on signing the left-back, who has a wealth of Premier League experience. The Gunners were interested in Bertrand back in January but could not complete the transfer in time. It is believed the Saints rejected the offer from Arsenal in the hope that Bertrand would sign a new deal at the club.

Bertrand and Southampton, however, have failed to reach an agreement ahead of the summer window. Reports now claim Arsenal are set to return for the Southampton man in the summer amid interest from Premier League champions Manchester City.

Arsenal need a new backup left-back

Southampton v Burnley - Premier League
Southampton v Burnley - Premier League

Kieran Tierney has been the first choice left-back at Arsenal this campaign with almost no competition for the Scot. Sead Kolasinac, who would have been Tierney's backup, joined Schalke in January on a loan deal and is expected to return to Arsenal at the end of the campaign. The Bosnian, however, was deemed surplus to requirements by Arteta last summer.

Kieran Tierney's recent injury meant Arsenal boss Mikel Arteta was forced to play midfielder Granit Xhaka at left-back for a number of fixtures. Cedric Soares, who joined Arsenal from Southampton last year, was another alternative for Mikel Arteta at left-back. The Portuguese even featured in that position a few times for Arsenal this season.

Soares, however, has failed to impress in the position, with Arteta opting to play Xhaka at left-back during Tierney's spell on the sidelines. Bertrand would be a better replacement for Tierney next season if Arsenal can complete a deal for him in the summer.

Ryan Bertrand joined Southampton in 2014 from Chelsea, where he previously won the Champions League. The defender has spent over 10 years in the Premier League and does not lack experience.

With Bertrand becoming a free agent in the summer, it could prove to be a very shrewd transfer by Arsenal if they can secure the player's signature.

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Edited by Ritwik Kumar
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