Arsenal have reportedly submitted an enquiry to Manchester City over the potential availability of English defender John Stones.
According to a report by 90 min, Arsenal have asked Manchester City to inform them if John Stones were to become available for a transfer. The Gunners are among the clubs keeping a keen eye on the 26-year-old English centre-back and his situation at the Etihad.
Stones joined Manchester City from Everton in the summer of 2016, arriving at the Etihad rated as one of the best young defenders in the Premier League. It was also suggested that the Englishman could perhaps, be the heir to Vincent Kompany at the heart of City’s defence, although the prophe is yet to come true four years on.
Presently, Stones is a mere squad option under Pep Guardiola, with Ruben Dias and Aymeric Laporte being the first-choice central defensive partnership. And even though Stones has started each of Manchester City’s last two Premier League games, his future at the club remains uncertain. Arsenal are among the clubs closely monitoring the player’s situation.
The Gunners have bolstered the heart of their defence in each of the last two summer transfer windows, with David Luiz and Gabriel Magalhaes, in particular, becoming regulars from those who were signed in this period. Furthermore, William Saliba is touted for a bright future at Arsenal even though he is yet to make his debut for the North Londoners.
Apart from the aforementioned trio, Mikel Arteta also has the likes of Rob Holding, Pablo Mari, Calum Chambers and Shkodran Mustafi at his disposal, while Sokratis Papastathopoulos is on the club’s books as well. While Mustafi and Sokratis are expected to be offloaded at the earliest, the Arsenal boss still has plenty of centre-backs available to him.
However, the report suggests that Arteta, who previously worked with Stones at Manchester City, is a huge fan of the player and thinks that the 26-year-old still has a bright future ahead of him. It further adds that Manchester City would be open to a sale, which should boost Arsenal’s prospects; and the Gunners have made an enquiry over his availability.
Having said that, Arsenal would be better advised to improve their creative options instead of signing yet another centre-back. With Mesut Ozil set to leave, a replacement is the need of the hour, especially with the squad being goal-shy. Nevertheless, it will be interesting to see if Arsenal do end up launching the offensive for the 26-year-old Englishman anytime soon.