Arsenal eyeing move for £86m Ajax star Jorrel Hato

By on April 18, 2024

Jorrel Hato Ajax

According to Arsenal-affiliated journalist Charles Watts, Arsenal are eyeing a move for Ajax defensive prodigy Jorrel Hato as Mikel Arteta contemplates bringing in a new left-back this summer.

Arsenal’s defence has been excellent this season. In the league, they have conceded the fewest goals (26), while keeping the most clean sheets (13). Despite this, there is one controversial position in Arsenal’s defence that Arteta may need to address; left-back.

This season, Oleksander Zinchenko’s defensive struggles have been cause for concern. The Ukrainian has at times failed to win his duels and occasionally goes AWOL at left back, drifting into midfield (as the inverted full-back), while his defensive instincts have also been questioned.

The £32 million signing from Manchester City has been a liability at times, and many fans have been calling for him to be axed altogether following the 2-0 loss to Aston Villa last weekend.

Jacub Kiwior and Takehiro Tomiyasu have also featured at left-back throughout the season, with no player nailing down the position as his own.

This has led to speculation that Arteta needs to bring in a new left-back and Charles Watts says Arsenal are keeping a close eye on Ajax star Jorrel Hato.

Zinchenko out, Hato in

Watts, speaking on Caught Offside, had this to say about Zinchenko and Arsenal’s left-back issues:

“Arteta definitely has a decision to make when it comes to Zinchenko in the summer. Arsenal have clear priorities in the summer transfer market, and they are higher up the pitch than in defence, but I wouldn’t rule out a new left-back arriving.

“Whether that be a specialised left-back or a player who can operate both as a full-back or as a centre-back remains to be seen. Arsenal have been monitoring Jorrel Hato at Ajax, for example, and it’s understandable to see why a player of his versatility and potential could be appealing.”

Hato is without a doubt one of Europe’s most promising upcoming talents. Though just 18 years old, the defender has taken command of the Ajax defense. His versatility would be a useful asset as he’s comfortable playing at centre-back or left-back, and he’s known for his physicality, power, and aerial ability.

A number of top European sides are reportedly interested in stealing him away from the Johan Cruyff Arena in the summer. However, any potential deal won’t be easy as he signed a new long-term contract with Ajax recently.

Soccer news via Teamtalk suggests the Dutch club may now demand up to £86 million for Hato’s signature this summer. With Arsenal in desperate need of a top class striker, it’s unlikely we’ll be able to spend that kind of money on a defender, so Ajax will have to lower their valuation if a deal is to be done.