Premier League • England

Edu pushing Arsenal to Brazilian centre-back in latest signal Arteta signing is not long for Gunners

Edu, Jakub Kiwior, Arsenal

Edu could push Jakub Kiwior out the door at Arsenal with the signing of a Brazilian centre-back

Edu is reportedly an ‘admirer’ of young Brazilian centre-back Douglas Mendes, ahead of a move which could push an Arsenal defender out the door.

Three of the Gunners’ defensive assets essentially pick themselves each week. Gabriel Magalhaes and William Saliba have formed one of the best defensive partnerships in the league.

And while Saliba’s emergence as a top centre-back under Arteta could have pushed Ben White out of the side, he has made the right-back position his own.

A very useful defensive asset, White’s growing attacking prowess has been on show in the last couple of weeks – he scored in the 6-0 rout against Sheffield United before assisting both goals in a last-gasp 2-1 win over Brentford.

But while Arteta has some of the league’s best defenders at his disposal, he’s not one to be content with what he’s got, and is always keen on improving and staying ahead of the curve.

That’s why he signed Jakub Kiwior last January and added Jurrien Timber to the defensive mix in the summer.

Kiwior has pushed Oleksandr Zinchenko out of the left-back position of late, as he’s performed so well when the Ukrainian was injured that he’s kept the role for himself.

With utility man Timber coming back from a long spell on the sidelines – after playing just over a half of football in the Premier League – the left-back position seems the most under threat if the Dutchman can force his way in.

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Edu pushing Arsenal towards Mendes signing

But Arteta and sporting director Edu do not look like they’ll stop trying to improve.

Indeed, another defensive signing could be coming, with Football Transfers reporting Arsenal ‘are following’ Red Bull Salzburg defender Mendes, who’s currently on loan back in his native Brazil with Red Bull Bragantino.

Edu is said to be pushing that interest, as he ‘is an admirer’ of the 19-year-old.

The centre-back has a small sample size of games to look at (25) and is yet to play for his parent club, having been loaned back to former side Bragantino after he moved to Salzburg in the summer.

That currently causes a roadblock for Arsenal, as he does not have enough first-team experience to qualify for a UK work permit, and will need to continue playing before that changes.

Mendes move could push Kiwior out

Edu has a wealth of knowledge on Brazilian football, and Arsenal fans will trust he knows the best moves to make in the country.

As such, while Mendes is yet to play a huge amount of football, if the sporting director thinks he’s one for the future, he probably is.

And given Arsenal are looking ahead to what their defence could look like a few years down the line, decisions could soon be made on the future of some of the defenders currently in the squad.

If Kiwior is pushed out of the left-back position soon, with the quality at centre-back, he could struggle for minutes again.

As per a recent reports, the Gunners are in discourse with AC Milan about letting the Polish international go – Arteta’s side reportedly don’t want him to leave on loan unless there’s a mandatory purchase clause.

If that’s the case now, given the north Londoners are looking at more centre-back signings, it seems very likely Kiwior is shown the door at some point.

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