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Report: Arsenal Target World Cup Star With Calum Chambers Set For Fulham Loan

Rohith Nair
FEATURED COLUMNIST
Rumors
06 Aug 2018, 16:55 IST

Club Atletico de Madrid v Arsenal - International Champions Cup 2018
Unai Emery is targeting another centre-back before Deadline Day

What's the story?

Arsenal defender Calum Chambers is set to go out on loan once again with Unai Emery unable to guarantee him playing time this season.

The Spanish manager wants Chambers to play first-team football and has reportedly sanctioned a loan deal to Premier League side Fulham, according to Evening Standard. The club will receive a £1m loan fee from their London neighbours.

With only half a week to go before the Premier League transfer window slams shut for incoming transfers, Arsenal are reportedly targeting Besiktas centre-back Domagoj Vida with reports of a £25m bid being prepared.

In case you didn't know...

This is not Chambers' first loan spell after he moved to the Gunners. Signed in 2014 from Southampton for a fee that has the potential to rise to £16m, Chambers has already been loaned to Middlesbrough in the 2016/17 season. He signed a new long-term contract at Arsenal just last month.

Vida was one of Croatia's best defenders at the World Cup as they finished runners-up in Russia - their best-ever finish after Croatia finished third in 1998. The 29-year-old played six games and even managed to score one goal (against Russia in the quarter-final) and also grabbed an assist.

England v Croatia: Semi Final - 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia
Domagoj Vida was one of Croatia's best players at the 2018 World Cup in Russia

Heart of the matter

Chambers has always found himself on the fringes of the first team in the last couple of seasons, playing mainly in Cup games. This move will allow him to play regular first-team football and he is even expected to start against Crystal Palace this weekend.

Emery is not short of options at centre-back even with Laurent Koscielny injured for the long-term. Greek defender Sokratis Papastathopoulos was bought this summer and he might partner Shkodran Mustafi in defence while youngsters Konstantinos Mavropanos and Rob Holding are available as backups.

Rumour Rating/Probability: 6/10

This deal will not go through unless Emery first offloads a few players. The new Gunners boss had admitted that he might have to trim the squad before the new season kicked off.

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With plenty of senior players vying for few positions, expect a few departures before any new player can come in.

What's next?

If Emery is to sign Vida, he will have to look at the possibility of selling Mustafi, who was signed for £35m in 2016. Arsenal may not even recoup that full amount if Mustafi moves on.

Video: The best of Domagoj Vida

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