Borussia Monchengladbach midfielder Denis Zakaria remains on Arsenal’s radar for a summer transfer, according to a report.
Arsenal are looking to strengthen their midfield in the summer. They are expecting Dani Ceballos and Martin Odegaard to return to Real Madrid after their loan spells. What’s more, they have little room in their plans for Lucas Torreira and Matteo Guendouzi when they return from their spells away.
Some major changes will be required at the Emirates Stadium as the Gunners look to rebuild. On course to finish outside the European places, they need reinforcements to get back towards where they belong.
Midfield is one of the main areas they need to strengthen. And according to 90min, they could turn to Zakaria to help them do just that.
Arsenal’s links with Zakaria date back to 2019. He is still on the agenda and now may be the time for them to pounce.
With little over 12 months left on his contract with Gladbach, Zakaria intends to leave this summer. His contractual situation may make him available for a decent price.
Funds will be tight at the Emirates Stadium this summer, so they may have to conjure up a swap offer. There was talk of Granit Xhaka rejoining Gladbach in the past and that has been suggested again.
Mikel Arteta is still thankful to have Xhaka in his squad but Zakaria could be an improvement. He may provide balance alongside Thomas Partey.
Zakaria has played 23 times in the Bundesliga this season, even featuring as a centre-back on occasion. But mainly, he has occupied the defensive midfield territory.
His qualities in that role have made him an interesting option for many clubs. Manchester City have been linked in the recent past, while Liverpool have also been suggested as they seek a replacement for Georginio Wijnaldum.
But Arsenal could try to put together their own package to convince Zakaria instead.
Willock wanted permanently by Newcastle
Another reason for Arsenal to target new midfielders is the possibility that they could lose Joe Willock in the summer as well.
Willock went to Newcastle on loan in January and has been a revelation for the Magpies. He has hit five goals in 11 appearances during a productive spell at St James’ Park.
Newcastle boss Steve Bruce has gone public with his plans for the midfielder, who is under contract until 2023.
Bruce told talkSPORT: “All of us would love to [make it permanent].
“He’s 21, a midfield player and he’s got five goals since the turn of the year, so of course we want him – but we have to respect that he’s Arsenal’s player.
“I’m sure Arsenal will have big discussions this summer, but if there’s a possibility that we can bring him back we’d love to do it.”