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Premier League • England

Arsenal ‘keeping tabs’ on available €35m La Liga ace days after Chelsea link

Samuel Bannister

Arsenal have reignited a previous interest in Barcelona and USA full-back Sergino Dest despite recently strengthening in his position, according to reports in Spain.

Dest joined Barcelona from Ajax in the summer of 2020, making 41 appearances in his debut season. But his fortunes are declining under new coach Xavi. Now, especially after the return of Dani Alves, there are doubts over Dest’s future.

Barcelona are supposedly willing to listen to offers for the 21-year-old, even though his contract runs until 2025.

A recent report suggested Chelsea could make a move for Sergino Dest. They wanted to strengthen at right-back in the summer, when Achraf Hakimi was a target, but the Inter Milan wide man went to PSG instead.

Nobody else arrived to reinforce the Chelsea flank, so it is something they could address in future. With Cesar Azpilicueta out of contract too, even though he has been playing in the back three more than the wider role, their need could become greater.

However, they were said to be facing competition from Bayern Munich. Indeed, the Bundesliga side are named as suitors in a fresh update from Marca – who put them in contention alongside Arsenal.

According to the Spanish source, Bayern and Arsenal are both “keeping tabs” on the right-back.

Arsenal already reinforced the position by signing Takehiro Tomiyasu from Bologna in the summer. However, they were considering Dest before that deal.

Aubameyang has been linked with Barcelona

Arsenal's Aubameyang has been linked with a loan move to Barcelona.

Tomiyasu has made a decent start to life at the Emirates Stadium. But Dest has different skillsets and they could compete for the same role.

To prise him away from Barcelona, though, they would need to make an offer between €30m and €35m.

Barca see Dest as sellable asset

That would give the La Liga giants a profit on their original investment. It would also clear the way for Xavi to pursue his own players rather than work with those he doesn’t want from the previous regime under Ronald Koeman.

Barca believe Dest has “sellable” qualities that mean they can get a good price for him, despite his relative lack of prominence.

Sergino Dest playing for Barcelona

He has started 11 La Liga games so far this season, providing three assists. But there have been complaints over a lack of consistency. Besides, he has only completed 90 minutes once since Xavi took charge in early November.

His time at Camp Nou could be running out. But only time will tell whether he will end up in Germany or London next.


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Sergino Dest has swap option

An alternative solution to be mentioned by AS would be a swap deal with his former club Ajax. In return, Barcelona could take Noussair Mazraoui.

Mazraoui also plays as a right-back and is out of contract at the end of the season. His agent Mino Raiola has said a January move looks unlikely, but anything can be possible.

Coincidentally, Mazraoui has also been linked with Arsenal, as well as Leeds United. But Barcelona may now be able to take their chance to sign him, sending Dest back to familiar surroundings in the process.

Mazraoui has 123 appearances to his name across his Ajax career. From those games, he has provided nine goals and eight assists. He has won five trophies at club level and has competed in the Champions League, so has good pedigree.

Dest, meanwhile, made 38 appearances during his own stint in Amsterdam. He contributed two goals and six assists before earning his move to Barcelona.

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