Premier League • England

Arsenal make enquiry for ideal defensive profile Lisandro Martinez, as William Saliba plan backed up

Lisandro Martinez, Edson Alvarez, Jurrien Timber, Ajax, celebrate Eredivisie title win

Arsenal have enquired about the possible signing of Lisandro Martinez as they consider adding another left-footed centre-back, according to a report.

Going into the summer transfer window, Arsenal’s priorities have been clear. First, they have wanted to strengthen at centre-forward. In that regard, they are optimistic of signing Gabriel Jesus and extending the contract of Eddie Nketiah.

Also on the agenda has been to upgrade their midfield. Youri Tielemans is of interest, while attacking midfielder Fabio Vieira appears to be arriving from Porto.

But another area Arsenal could have to think about is their defence. They ended the 2021-22 season with only three centre-backs: Benjamin White, Gabriel Magalhaes and Rob Holding.

Two more options were out on loan, in the shape of William Saliba and Pablo Mari. The latter looks likely to leave on a permanent basis, while Arsenal have a big decision to make about Saliba after he impressed for Marseille.

Discussing his future, The Athletic reveal that Saliba is ready to return to Mikel Arteta’s setup. With that in mind, they should have enough depth.

However, the report also claims they are still in the market – as a non-urgent issue – for a left-footed centre-half, despite Gabriel favouring that side anyway. In that regard, it is claimed that they have made enquiries about Ajax centre-back Lisandro Martinez this summer.

Martinez has played for Ajax since 2019, when he arrived during the reign of Erik ten Hag. Coincidentally, the new Manchester United manager has been linked with a reunion by other sources.

But he appears to be on Arsenal’s shortlist too. The report claims that even in the event of Saliba returning, Arsenal could sign a left-footer in his role if the opportunity is right.

Arsenal can get by without Lisandro Martinez for now

Erik ten Hag and Lisandro Martinez at Ajax

Martinez is under contract with Ajax until 2025, so may not be immediately available. He could turn out to be one to keep an eye on in the future, though.

At the age of 24, he is still developing but has plenty of experience behind him. If he continues to impress, he could be an even more attractive option in the years to come.

For now, though, Arsenal seem well-stocked enough to compete without adding him. That is unless Gabriel is prised away, given he has attracted interest from elsewhere.

But after being part of a solid partnership with White, it would be beneficial for Arsenal to stick with the Brazilian if they can. Only time will tell if he is later joined – or replaced – by another South American.

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