Premier League • England

Mikel Arteta wounded as Arsenal told new price tag for classy defender; Liverpool also kept in loop after deal

Arsenal look set to miss out on Ajax star Jorrel Hato

Arsenal look set to miss out on Ajax star Jorrel Hato

Arsenal are admirers of Ajax defender Jorrel Hato but he has just signed a new contract, meaning they will have to stump up an eye-watering sum to sign him. 

The 18-year-old is considered to be one of the best young players in the Netherlands and several other top clubs, including Liverpool, are thought to be interested.

Hato broke into the senior Ajax team last season and has gradually become one of their most important players.

The centre-back, who can also play as a left-back, has made 25 league appearances for the Dutch giants this season, scoring one goal and helping his team to four clean sheets in the process.

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Arsenal had been planning to make a move for Hato in the coming months if he didn’t pen a new deal, as they see him as someone who could become a superstar in the future.

The Gunners signed Jurrien Timber from Ajax in July and were looking to repeat that trick with Hato. However, it seems that a deal will be very difficult to negotiate.

Ajax to demand £86m for Jorrel Hato

As mentioned, Hato has just signed a new contract with Ajax, tying him down until 2028.

Hato’s previous deal had just over 12 months remaining and expired in July 2025 – so you can see why Arsenal sensed a potential market opportunity if his situation stayed the same.

This new contract makes a departure very unlikely for the defender unless someone agrees to pay a huge fee for his services.

According to Soccernews, Arsenal or Liverpool would have to pay around £86m for Ajax to even consider sanctioning Hato’s departure this summer.

It seems unlikely that Mikel Arteta’s side would be willing to splash out such a sum on a new defender when their current options of Gabriel Magalhaes and William Saliba are performing so well.

Hato would have come in handy in the left-back position, though, considering that Oleksandr Zinchenko could end up leaving the Emirates in the coming months. 

Hato admitted last year that his ‘dream’ is to play for a team like Arsenal, so a move to North London could still happen in the future.

When asked about Jurrien Timber joining the Gunners, the teenager said: “Unfortunately he (Timber) was seriously injured in his first Premier League game for Arsenal, but he is still young and has a bright future ahead of him.

“In any case, the move to Arsenal was a wonderful one for him. It is also my dream to one day make such a transfer, but I realise that I still have a very long way to go.”

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