Greek giants Panathinaikos and AEK Athens reportedly want to sign Arsenal defender Konstantinos Mavropanos as the defender considers his future at the Emirates.
Arsenal’s summer business has been moving in the right direction, considering all the recent moves and speculations. And, while Unai Emery is looking to strengthen his backline, there could be a defender could soon end up leaving. According to SDNA News, Greek clubs Panathinaikos and AEK Athens are targeting Arsenal defender Konstantinos Mavropanos.
Mavropanos became a popular figure at Arsenal not only for his early performances but also for the fact that he was the Gunners’ first signing following the appointment of Sven Mislintat. The Greek defender showed early promise 18 months ago, but has since struggled with injuries and form, as a result of which he has not been considered as a reliable option by Unai Emery.
Last season, after finally getting ahead of his injury problems, Mavropanos featured for Arsenal at a time when the entire team was out of form. It was during this period that Arsenal surrendered their favourites tag to finish outside the top four. Emery is known to be in the market for a central defender but might allow Mavropanos to leave if the right offer comes in.
Arsenal are also on the verge of signing Nicolas Pepe in a club-record deal and might be compelled to cash in on some of their fringe stars to balance their books. Due to the existing options available for Emery, Mavropanos might find himself behind several established stars. Additionally, the return to fitness of Rob Holding and Calum Chamber’s presence might be threatening for the Greek.
Back in his homeland, Panathinaikos and AEK Athens are the sides showing an interest. In the off chance that Arsenal decide to offload Mavropanos, the Greek giants are ready to compete with each other for the promising defender. The teams seem to be impressed by the prospect of Mavropanos and believe he could be the answer to their respective defensive problems.
However, Emery and the Arsenal board still hold Mavropanos in high regard despite his struggle with injuries and form. Moreover, the 21-year-old defender has a contract till 2023 and Arsenal might want to see how he develops. In that case, the Premier League giants might be open to the idea of a loan spell for the defender.
Panathinaikos and AEK are even ready to take him on loan if a chance arises. Such a move will be a good idea if Emery thinks Mavropanos could be an asset for the future. Arsenal have their investment secure with a long-term contract. They might be tempted to allow him to return to his homeland to gain valuable experience.
We will have to wait a bit longer to see what Emery decides with Mavropanos. A move to either of the Greek giants could be valuable for the player. But, with Laurent Koscielny also trying to force an exit, Mavropanos might be needed for the season if Arsenal fail to sign any defender from hereon.