David Luiz will leave Arsenal at the end of the season after just two years in north London with the Gunners. He has not received a contract extension offer but the Brazilian was set to move onto pastures new anyway due to a lack of game time. Now there is an opportunity to strengthen at the heart of defence and with that in mind, Express Sport looks at four realistic options that would improve Arsenal’s backline.
Merih Demiral – Juventus
The Turkey international has been on Arsenal’s radar for several years but Juventus have always been keen on keeping Demiral.
He suffered a serious knee injury in January last year that halted his impressive start in Turin following his move from Sassuolo.
Juve are well stocked in central defence with Giorgio Chiellini, Leonardo Bonucci and Matthijs de Ligt, meaning Demiral has not always had the game time he desires.
He could be available for around £25million this summer and would automatically improve Arsenal’s defensive options.
Ezri Konsa – Aston Villa
Perhaps a wildcard option, but Konsa has hardly put a foot wrong this season for Aston Villa.
He is still yet to receive international recognition but Konsa has been amongst the best centre-backs in the division this season.
Like David Luiz, he likes to bring the ball out and start the transition from the back.
Mikel Arteta likes his defenders to be bold and show confidence in possession and Konsa has the quality to do exactly that.
Duje Caleta-Car – Marseille
Lastly, Duje Caleta-Car is an option that makes more financial sense for Arsenal.
Ultimately, the lack of European football has restricted their transfer budget this summer and top-bracket centre-backs are likely to be off the agenda.
But Caleta-Car represents value for money and he was a player that Liverpool very nearly signed on transfer deadline day in January.
Arsenal are planning to target younger players this summer and at 24, the Croatian is at the perfect age to continue developing.