Arsenal in advanced negotiations to sign £35m-rated centre-back

Arsenal are reportedly leading the race to sign Freiburg defender Caglar Soyuncu during this summer’s transfer window. The Turkey international is currently on a break following the a trio of friendlies with the national side and his representative has now claimed that the Gunners have held ‘concrete talks’ regarding the centre-back.

In an exclusive with Turkish Football, Soyuncu’s agent Mustafa Dogru confirmed that his client has been closely watched by Sven Mislintat, who is presently the head of recruitment at the north London club. The representative added that the Gunners are in advanced negotiations for the 22-year-old and only a fee remains to be settled with Freiburg.

Nonetheless, Dogru highlighted that there are four other Premier League club including Liverpool, who have contacted him regarding Soyuncu and there could yet be a twist, should Unai Emery’s side remain reluctant to match’s Freiburg asking price.

Over the past two decades, the Gunners have often remained reluctant to spend big sums when it comes to strengthening the defensive department but there are presently facing more of a necessity following a disappointing sixth place finish in the Premier League last term.

Arsenal conceded 51 goals during a below-par campaign under Arsene Wenger and the cracks were mostly lying in the central defensive position where they had to change personnel regularly due to fitness issues.

Likewise next season, the Gunners are expected to be without Laurent Koscielny for the first half of the campaign after he underwent a surgery over a serious Achilles problem in May.

In his place, Sokratis Papastathopoulos is likely to feature with an agreement already sorted out but it will be interesting to see whether the Greek can make a mark with the north London club.

At the age of 29, Sokratis does not have much room for improvement with his overall qualities and his performances are likely to be judged from the off, given the fast-paced game of the Premier League.