Arsenal have been heavily linked with a move for Ajax defender Lisandro Martinez this summer. The Athletic have reported that an initial bid from the Gunners has been turned down in an attempt to secure his signature early in the transfer window.
The 24-year-old can play at centre-back as well as left-back, offering quality in depth for Mikel Arteta going forward. It comes after a season of impressive displays for the Spaniard, but without the depth and consistency when it counted to confirm a return to the Champions League.
The summer transfer market offers the manager a chance to address the issue and rally his squad to go for a top four finish again. On his plans for the window, he said: “We are going to have certain resources, not unlimited resources, some resources.
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“And with our resources we have to play and do what we have to do in the best possible way. We don’t know what the rest are going to have in terms of resources, which I’m assuming is going to be challenging because now it’s not a top three or top four league.
“Now it is a top eight or 10 teams that are involved. That’s why we have to find a way to do again what we did last summer.”
Two deals look set to be completed early in the market, with Matt Turner and Fabio Vieira offers being confirmed by their current clubs. However, there will be a desire for the Gunners to continue strengthening, with plenty of time left.
Martinez appears to be one of those options, with the Argentina international offering versatility as well as security at left-back, a problem position when Kieran Tierney was out through injury. One thing that would have to be considered, if a move does go through, is his squad number.
He currently wears the number 21 at Ajax which is currently available at the Emirates following Calum Chambers’ departure in January. As for elsewhere, for his country he has also worn the number two, which is free so long as the returning Hector Bellerin doesn’t reclaim it.
He currently holds the number 16 for Argentina though, something currently occupied by Rob Holding. It remains to be seen if a deal is possible, however there are some numbers available upon his potential arrival.
Source by Football London