Arsenal remain interested in RB Leipzig defender Ibrahima Konate, reports claim, as they look to replenish their backline in the summer.
Konate has risen to prominence over the past few seasons with Leipzig. Still only 21, he has already made 88 appearances for the German giants to date.
Often playing alongside French compatriot Dayot Upamecano in the heart of defence, Konate is also outlining his future potential.
While Upamecano has already agreed to join Bayern Munich, a number of clubs are circling for Konate as well. Arsenal are long-term admirers.
The Gunners’ interest dates back to when Unai Emery was in charge. Now, Mikel Arteta could try to add him to his own squad.
According to the Evening Standard, Arsenal are one of the numerous clubs scouting Konate in case he is available at the end of the season.
Arsenal are preparing for a defensive overhaul in the summer. David Luiz will be out of contract, for example.
There are also doubts about the future of Calum Chambers, who has struggled for gametime this season.
Meanwhile, William Saliba and Dinos Mavropanos are currently out on loan. The report claims the latter is increasingly likely to stay where he is, in the Bundesliga with Stuttgart.
If Arsenal decide they need another centre-back, then their attention may be turned towards the German top flight as well.
Konate remains under contract until 2023, but Leipzig may be able to make a tidy profit on him if they sell earlier than that. Such a scenario could be one Arsenal look to take advantage of.
Final position to affect transfer plans
However, he conceded that those plans will be affected by where they finish this season.
“We are planning what is going to happen in the summer,” the Arsenal manager said. “It will depend where we finish and how we finish in some cases.
“Everything is planned so let’s see what the market can bring and what the last few months can bring as well.”