Arsenal will reportedly need to pay £25m if they are to prize Manchester United defender Chris Smalling away from the Red Devils in the summer, as they look to find a successor to their veteran centre-back Per Mertesacker.
As reported by the Daily Star, Smalling’s inconsistent form for United could see the club look to off-load him in the summer. Arsenal’s defensive problems have seen them keep up with the pace of their Premier League rivals in recent seasons, and Arsène Wenger is thought to see Smalling as an ideal option to provide some solidity to the back-line.
The Gunners made a £10m January transfer deadline day bid for West Bromwich Albion defender Jonny Evans, but the offer was immediately turned down by the Baggies. A clause in the Northern Ireland international’s contract means that he will be available for just £3m if his side are relegated at the end of the season – which should spark a scramble for the 30-year-old.
With competition set to be stiff for Evans’ signature – with Manchester City thought to be eyeing up a move – Smalling could be a strong alternative for the Gunners. United are thought to be lining up a bid for Spurs defender Toby Alderweireld, which would see Smalling become surplus to requirements at Old Trafford.
In other news, Paris Saint-Germain are believed to be preparing an audacious move for United boss José Mourinho, as current manager Unai Emery’s future is in doubt following his side’s 3-1 Champions League loss to Real Madrid. Despite Mourinho only recently signing a contract extension, PSG are reportedly prepared to pay the necessary compensation to make the deal happen.