Arsenal’s defensive woes would come to an end if they sign this Serie A wall with £31m release clause

Arsenal opinion: Should the Gunners sign Kostas Manolas?

According to a report from The Daily Mail, Arsenal are set to trigger AS Roma’s Kostas Manolas’ release clause in the coming weeks. The Gunners along with Manchester United have been long linked with the Greek international but Unai Emery’s side are set to make the first move for him.

Arsenal have had a shocking defensive campaign where they let in a massive 51 goals in the Premier League alone – only Manchester United with 54 have a worse record among the top nine teams in the table.

Arsenal blew a golden chance to finish in the top three after terrible back to back results against Crystal Palace, Wolverhampton Wanderers and Leicester City in the business end of the season.

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However, the Gunners still have a huge chance to make it into the Champions League through the Europa League where they face London rivals Chelsea in an all English final in Baku at the end of this month.

Qualification to the Champions League will have a huge say on Arsenal’s transfer budget and their ability to attract top players in the summer so a win against the Blues is an absolute necessity.

Irrespective of what happens in the final, a new centre-half has to come in next season for Arsenal to have any realistic chance of competing with the best teams in the country. Kostas Manolas would be an incredible addition and with his release clause being just £31 million, he will surely turn out to be a huge bargain.

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The Greek international is among the very best defenders in world football and he would slot in perfectly in Arsenal’s backline. Manolas’ transition at the club shouldn’t take much time either thanks to his previous experience of playing Sokratis Papastathopoulos for the Greek national side.

At 27 years of age, Manolas is at the top of his game and Arsenal will have him in his peak if they manage to sign him in the summer. The Greek international is very good with the ball which suits Unai Emery’s style of play very well but off the ball is where he has made a name for himself.

Manolas’ positioning in the centre of defence is impeccable and his inclusion will give Bernd Leno a lot of confidence going forward. A back three of Koscielny, Sokratis and Manolas has the potential to be one of the best in the league and Arsenal should make their move quickly to sign him in the summer.

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Arsenal’s biggest problem for the last few years has been with the lack of a world-class centre-half. Signing Kostas Manolas will solve the issue and the Gunners’ fortunes would change massively with him in their squad next season.

Written by Shamanth Jayaram

24-year old Electrical engineer turned football writer, born and brought up in Bangalore.

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