Arsenal have joined the likes of Liverpool and Manchester United in the race to sign Brighton’s highly-rated centre-back.
Arsenal are on the lookout for centre-backs this summer and have their sights set on England’s latest addition to Gareth Southgate’s squad for the Euro 2020, Ben White. The Mirror claims that Mikel Arteta is a massive admirer of the defender and is keen on signing him this summer transfer window.
The Gunners are planning on a squad overhaul and have already identified key targets in midfield and the frontline. However, the defence is also in a dire need of recruitment as the likes of David Luiz and Rob Holding have been poor at the back. Moreover, the club has confirmed Luiz’s departure upon the expiry of his contract. With that being said, Arteta is keen on signing a technical centre-back who can partner Gabriel in the heart of the defence.
White fits the category that the Spanish manager is looking for as he is a technically gifted modern-day centre-back. The 23-year-old is known mainly for his ball-playing ability and for his tough style of tackling forwards. The England international can also play in multiple positions such as a defensive midfielder and even as a right-back due to his technical ability on the ball. His ability to build attacks from the back by playing the ball out would be a major asset for Mikel Arteta as the likes of David Luiz and Rob Holding do not meet his requirements.
The centre-back has taken major strides in the past few years. White played a pivotal role at Leeds United while on loan, in the 2019-20 season and helped them gain promotion to the Premier League. His efforts with Leeds that season saw him make the PFA Team of the Year in the Championship. The 2020-21 season was Ben White’s first season in the senior squad of Brighton. He won over Graham Potter’s faith immediately and earned himself the club’s Player of the Year award.
While Ben White seems to be the ideal candidate for Mikel Arteta description of a defender, the question arises of whether Arsenal can afford the centre-back who is valued at 50 million pounds. The Gunners are also expected to face tough competition as the likes of Liverpool, Manchester United and Tottenham Hotspur are all in the race to sign the Brighton superstar.
With that being said, the likely hood of the north Londoners signing the 23-year-old seems highly unlikely. Arsenal need to divert their attention towards more affordable transfer targets as the club’s needs to address several loopholes in the squad.