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Arsenal submit formal bid as Wenger eyes second signing – report
Arsene Wenger looks keen to wrap-up his second summer signing after the Daily Mail reported that Arsenal have submitted an improved £1.2m offer for Bolton Wanderers defender Rob Holding.
We sealed the £30m signing of Switzerland international midfielder Ganit Xhaka from Borussia Mönchengladbach earlier this week and now it appears Arsene has his eye on bringing in a new defender.
Holding has been strongly linked with a move to the Emirates in recent weeks after catching the eye of Arsenal scouts following an excellent campaign with Bolton – despite their relegation from the Championship.
The 20-year-old was a rare positive for the Trotters and was named as their Player of the Season, prompting Wenger to test their resolve with an opening £750,000 bid – which was swiftly knocked back by Bolton.
The Daily Mail claim we’ve now gone back in with an improved £1.2m offer plus performance-based add ons, however, that offer is also likely to be rejected as the newspaper suggest that the League One outfit value Holding at nearer £4m.
We’ll have to wait and see whether Wenger will be prepared to pay that kind of money but with the youngster about the enter the final year of his contract and refusing to pen an extension, I think we’ll see the boss try and play hardball.
Holding is one of the best young defenders outside the Premier League and he’s already represented England at Under-21 level, so I think he’d be a useful player to add to the squad as he’s got a bright future ahead of him.
In the end, I think we’ll probably get a deal agreed with Bolton and Holding’s arrival could cast doubt over the future of Calum Chambers. Like Calum, Holding is predominantly a centre-back but can also play on the right so I wouldn’t be surprised to see the former Southampton man head out on loan this summer.
If not, then I think it suggests that either Chambers will be considered as back-up to Bellerin at right back with Holding our fourth-choice centre-back. Or, one of the existing centre-backs will leave – most likely Mertesacker.