Arsenal have opened talks to secure the signing of Borussia Monchengladbach midfielder and Manchester City target Denis Zakaria on a free transfer next year.
According to a report from Fussball Transfers, Arsenal have initiated negotiations to sign Borussia Monchengladbach midfielder Denis Zakaria, who is also a target for Manchester City.
Zakaria has established himself as one of the most reliable central midfielders in the Bundesliga since he signed for Gladbach from BSC Young Boys in the summer of 2017. While he had to deal with injury issues over the last season, the Switzerland international has returned strongly and has made 12 appearances this season, scoring two goals and setting up one more.
Zakaria, however, will be out of contract with the Bundesliga outfit at the end of the ongoing campaign and has decided not to sign a new deal. This has put many top clubs across Europe on high alert, with the likes of Barcelona, Real Madrid, Juventus, AS Roma, Borussia Dortmund all being linked, along with Manchester City and Arsenal.
Manchester City are on the lookout for reinforcements in the defensive midfield region as they prepare for life after current captain Fernandinho. The Brazilian enforcer is 36 years old and is in the twilight of his career, while his contract with the Premier League champions also runs out at the end of the ongoing campaign.
In Rodri, Pep Guardiola has a readymade replacement for his captain but will need a backup for the Spaniard, which explains City’s interest in Zakaria. While talks over a free transfer had been held, the Cityzens are now believed to be pushing for a January move itself. However, the Sky Blues will have to contend with competition from Arsenal for the Swiss midfielder’s capture.
Arsenal strengthened their midfield in the summer with the signing of Albert Sambi Lokonga, who has been a fine addition to Mikel Arteta’s setup. However, Mohamed Elneny is out of contract next year and is expected to leave while Thomas Partey continues to suffer from bouts of inconsistency.
With Granit Xhaka the only other member in the midfield department for the north Londoners, it would bode well for Arteta & co. to sign a new player to bolster their options. Zakaria, who has experience at the highest level, and will be a free agent in the summer, makes for a very viable option for Arteta & co.
The report claims that Arsenal have already started talks with the midfielder’s agents over a possible summer move. It does mention that there have been contacts with both Manchester City and Manchester United, but the Gunners are better positioned. However, their chances of landing him will depend on whether they qualify for European football next season.