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Reports - Arsenal agree deal for a defender

Mikel Arteta
Mikel Arteta's Arsenal are expected to be active in January.
Modified 31 Dec 2020, 17:12 IST

Arsenal have reportedly finalised a deal to bring Hertha BSC defender Omar Rekik to the Emirates Stadium in January.

Rekik is set to be flown out to London soon to undergo a medical before he signs a long-term deal with the club. The Gunners were in negotiations to sign Rekik in the summer but could not complete a deal in time.

The young defender hasn't made his senior debut for Hertha yet but could be thrown into the deep end when he joins the Gunners, as Arteta plans to fast-track his integration into the first team.

According to Bild, Rekik was a player who was brought to the attention of Arsenal by the club's former captain Per Mertesacker. The World Cup winner spent seven years at Arsenal and is now in charge of the Arsenal academy.

Mertesacker, who has been tracking the young defender for a long time, asked Arsenal to sign Rekik in the summer. Now, Arsenal seem to have finally got their man. The deal is reportedly worth around £600,000.

The 19-year-old Rekik could be a risky signing for Arteta, as the defender might take some time to adapt to the pace and physicality of the Premier League. However, Rekik could be expected to play in Cup games.

Arsenal currently have a log-jam in the centre-back department, but with Sokratis Papasthatopoulos and Shkodran Mustafi likely to leave the club in January, it would clear up space for Rekic. The Gunners would likely pair him up with summer signing William Saliba, who still hasn't debuted for the club.

Omar Rekik could be just the beginning of Arsenal's January splurge

Arsenal are reportedly interested in Isco as well.
Arsenal are reportedly interested in Isco as well.

Mikel Arteta will be looking to strengthen his squad with more established players in the January transfer window, as Arsenal need to make their way back up the Premier League table.

The main priority for Arteta will be to bring in a creative midfielder. Arsenal have found it very difficult to score goals this season, as the club has lacked a decent playmaker to pull the strings from midfield.

Dani Ceballos was supposed to be the answer to Arsenal's creativity problems, but the Spaniard has had a poor season so far at the Emirates. Emile Smith-Rowe has done well in that position, but Mikel Arteta would like to have a more established name there.

The likes of Isco and Emiliano Buendia are names that have been thrown around, but Arsenal will have to move some players out first to clear up space on their wage bill for bringing someone in.

Published 31 Dec 2020, 17:12 IST
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