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Arsenal set sights on Bundesliga star, player happy to leave
The Mirror are carrying a report claiming that Arsenal are interested in signing Bayern Munich defender Mehdi Benatia as Arsene Wenger looks to strengthen his options at the back this summer.
Despite growing unrest among the Arsenal fanbase following a disappointing campaign, Wenger is expected to stay-on as manager as see out the final year of his contract at the Emirates next season.
It looks like the Frenchman is already making plans for the summer and a top class partner for Laurent Koscielny seems to be on the priority list the Mirror claim that Arsenal are showing a keen interest in signing Mehdi Benatia from Bayern Munich.
Per Mertesacker and Gabriel have been vying for the second centre-back spot all season with neither really making the position their own and it looks like Arsene is finally going to bring in a new man to partner Kos this summer, with Benatia on his radar.
The Moroccan international joined Bayern from Roma in 2014 but has struggled with injuries this season and has been restricted to making just 12 league appearances for the German giants.
Benatia has put his future at the Allianz in serious doubt after criticising the club for their public pursuit of Borussia Dortmund’s Mats Hummels, who’s expected to join Bayern this summer, which would push Benatia even further down the pecking order.
The 29-year-old is quoted as saying by the Mirror that he’ll happily leave Bayern at the end of the season:
“I have no problem, if I have to leave Bayern Munich, then I’ll leave, but first I want to end this season well,” he told Sky Sport Italia.
“I am experiencing a very important moment of my career and I won’t be like the club who decided to talk about the transfer market before a Champions League semi-final.”
It looks like the centre-back will be off in the summer and I think he’d be an excellent signing if we could get a deal agreed with Bayern. Benatia was outstanding for Roma before earning his move to the Bundesliga and as long as he’s over his injury problems, I’d like to see us make a move for him.
Wenger needs to address our problems at the back and while I do think the team needs to do more as a unit defensively, a new partner for Koscielny is required and Bentaia would be a great option.