Following injuries to Per Mertesacker and Gabriel, Arsenal have been linked with a move for Valencia’s Shkodran Mustafi and are still hopefully of getting a deal over the line.
However, as all Arsenal fans know, transfer deals don’t always get over the line and as such, it looks like the club have identified two players in case the move for the German international collapses.
According to Sky Sports, Arsenal have both Omer Toprak of Bayern Leverkusen and Simon Kjaer of Fenerbahce on their ‘Plan B’ list. Toprak remains the first choice for Wenger.
Interestingly, Manchester United also had a strong interest in the defender but failed to secure a deal.
Both players are 27-years-old and both are full internationals, having represented Turkey and Denmark, respectively
Arsene Wenger was forced to select Rob Holding and Calum Chambers at the heart of his defence against Liverpool and Leicester, and while the pair did not do too much wrong, the fact is that such a duo is probably not strong enough for a team with title ambitions, so it’s clear that Arsenal needs to get another defender into the club as soon as possible.
Toprak, The German-born defender, who has 23 caps for Turkey, has been an ever-present for Leverkusen over the past five seasons, appearing 170 times in all competitions, scoring six goals.
Toprak remains as an ideal back-up option for Arsenal, who will reportedly make enquiries if their pursuit of Mustafi fails.
Pressure is mounting on Gunners boss Arsene Wenger this summer after his refusal to sign players for large fees, aside from Granit Xhaka who signed for £30m at the start of the window.
Arsenal have failed in their pursuits for the likes of Gonzalo Higuain and Alvaro Morata, but Wenger has insisted that he will spend the money if he finds the right player.