Arsenal have reportedly set their sights on 17-year-old French prodigy Ismael Doukoure over a possible move this coming summer.
According to a report by French outlet Foot Mercato, Ismael Doukoure is the subject of interest from Arsenal over a move in the summer transfer window. The 17-year-old French defender is also being tailed by fellow Premier League club Leicester City.
Ismael Doukoure joined the Valenciennes academy in 2017 before making swift progress within the youth setup and subsequently making his first-team debut in 2020, aged just 17. Now in his first full season with the senior side, the teenage prodigy has made 15 appearances in all competitions till date.
His progress has not gone unnoticed either, with RC Strasbourg already making an approach to sign the 17-year-old in the summer transfer window. Interestingly, Premier League heavyweights Arsenal also seem to be keeping tabs on Doukoure.
Arsenal have not been linked with many centre-backs ahead of the summer transfer window despite offloading Sokratis Papastathopoulos and Shkodran Mustafi in January. French centre-back Jules Kounde is one of few central defenders who are reportedly on the Gunners’ radar, with the north Londoners instead focusing their attention on the two full-back slots.
The interest in Doukoure, though, makes a great deal of sense. With Calum Chambers and Rob Holding, in addition to William Saliba, facing an uncertain future at the Emirates, Arsenal already need to be on the lookout for potential central defensive additions.
On top of that, with David Luiz on the wrong side of 30 and making some high- profile errors, it is prudent for the Gunners to sign a centre-back to be a long-term replacement for the Brazilian. To that end, someone like Doukoure, who has drawn comparisons with Dayot Upamecano, previously an Arsenal target, is a viable option for the English giants.
Apart from Arsenal, Leicester City are also closely monitoring the 17-year-old French prodigy. But, with RC Strasbourg making their first move for the youngster, the north Londoners and Leicester will need to move quickly in pursuit of Doukoure, if they are to secure his services when the summer transfer window opens. For now, the teenager has popped up on Arsenal’s radar.