Arsenal reached an agreement overnight to offload Pablo Mari to Serie A newcomers Monza, according to reports.
Mari spent the second half of last season on loan in Serie A with Udinese after struggling for gametime with Arsenal. In 24 months, he only managed to make 22 appearances for the club.
In contrast, across just six months with Udinese, he achieved 15 outings. As a result, he has earned more admirers in Italy.
There were tentative links with champions AC Milan a couple of months ago. More realistically, there has been a battle between Hellas Verona and Monza for his services in recent days.
Verona reportedly made a permanent offer for Mari’s services recently. However, Gianluca Di Marzio has now revealed that Monza have agreed terms with Arsenal instead.
The newly promoted Italian outfit will be taking him on loan. They will have an obligation to make the deal permanent if they avoid relegation.
Although new to Serie A, some will fancy Monza’s chances of staying up. They are backed by former AC Milan owner and ex-Italian Prime Minister, Silvio Berlusconi.
Monza have already made a few ambitious signings since their promotion. They have brought in the likes of Stefano Sensi and Andrea Ranocchia from Inter, Matteo Pessina from Atalanta and Alessio Cragno from Cagliari. All have caps for the Italian national team.
Now, Monza are broadening their horizons to find foreign players to strengthen their squad. The 28-year-old Spaniard, Mari, is on the verge of becoming their next recruit.
In fact, he will be taking a private flight on Wednesday to arrive in Italy. Then, he will conduct his medical checks with Monza before putting pen to paper on his contract.
It is not clear how much Arsenal will gain from Mari’s sale if Monza stay up. Nor is the length of his potential permanent deal with the Serie A side disclosed.
Pablo Mari may have played last game for Arsenal
Arsenal have sometimes struggled to find the right exit solutions for players in recent years. Some have had to rip up contracts rather than be sold.
Other unwanted players remain in Mikel Arteta’s squad to this day. For the rest of the summer, the club will be trying to place them elsewhere.
Pablo Mari is among the group of players surplus to requirements. He would have been behind Gabriel Magalhaes, William Saliba, Benjamin White and Rob Holding in the pecking order if he stayed at the Emirates Stadium.
And with a contract only running until 2024, it will be pivotal for Arsenal to be able to sell Mari next year.
So, Arsenal fans will be wondering if Monza can be Serie A survivors in their debut campaign at the top level. Although they have a new-look squad, which may take time to gel, there is reason to believe they can.
They have strong backing behind them and have brought in players more than capable of securing safety. Mari will be another with his own know-how, while his experience with Udinese will help.
Therefore, even though Monza will be in a relegation battle, they could come out of it unscathed. If that does happen, Mari will have left Arsenal for good.