Arsenal are actively pursuing a deal to bring S.C. Freiburg defender Caglar Soyuncu to the Emirates this summer, according to Matt Law of the Telegraph.
Much has been said about Arsenal’s defence being shambolic lately. With the retirement of Per Mertesacker and injury keeping Laurent Koscielny out for at least six months, the situation is set to become much worse unless the club strengthen the defensive part of the squad significantly during the upcoming transfer window.
Soyuncu is a talented 23-year-old centre-back, standing 6’2” tall. He has spent two seasons in Germany, accumulating 47 appearances in all competitions (42 in the Bundesliga) and scoring one goal for Freiburg. It is a decent level of top-flight football experience given his age. It seems the Gunners are building their defence with long-term future in mind, with the Turkish youngster potentially joining the likes of Rob Holding and Ainsley Maitland-Niles in the younger department of the squad.
While such an approach from the club is in itself commendable, Arsenal need more proven quality at the back. They need at least one player that can step into the back line immediately and improve it. However, it is reasonable to assume that such signings will not be made or even pursued until the name of the new manager is known.
There has been movement on that front as well. Juventus manager Massimiliano Allegri, who had been considered the favourite for the job, expressed his desire to stay in Turin next season. Hoffenheim director of football Alexander Rosen has told Sky Germany that Julian Nagelsmann isn’t going anywhere. These developments have therefore opened the door for former captain Mikel Arteta who has now become the leading candidate to succeed Arsene Wenger in the Emirates dugout.
Despite of previously expressed doubts relating to his lack of managerial experience, it seems CEO Ivan Gazidis wants Arteta for the job as a new management structure is being implemented. Whatever the final decision may be, its official announcement is expected to come before the World Cup in Russia starts.