Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta is reported to be eyeing a surprise move for defender John Stones from his former club Manchester City this month.
The Gunners recently sanctioned the loan exit of Konstantinos Mavropanos to Nuremberg and this has left them with just four fit senior centre-backs in David Luiz, Sokratis, Rob Holding and Shkodran Mustafi.
Moreover, Mustafi has been repeatedly been linked with a move away from the club in recent weeks and a recent report has claimed that he could be close to sealing a move to Galatasaray.
In such a case, the club will certainly find themselves with a concern over the central defensive options and The Sun reports that Arteta is keen on strengthening the position with the signing of Stones.
The same outlet adds that Stones is represented by the same agency as Arteta and the England international could welcome a move to increase his gametime, which would benefit his prospects of making the Three Lions squad for Euro 2020.
Stones is currently valued at around £54m, as per Transfermarkt, but the Gunners are unlikely to push through a permanent deal particularly after the spending spree last summer, according to Goal.com.
Going by this trend, The Sun reports that Arteta would prefer to sign Stones on a temporary basis, but there is the big question mark whether the Cityzens would even consider the player’s departure.
The holders are short of experienced options in the central defence after the long-term injury setback for Aymeric Laporte and Stones is widely regarded as the immediate back-up choice to Fernandinho and Nicolas Otamendi.
Pep Guardiola’s side may of course pursue another central defender this month but until then, it seems unrealistic for the Gunners to convince the Mancunian outfit into parting ways with the 25-year-old in any kind of deal.
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