Per Mertesacker could be heading for the exit at Arsenal at the end of the current season, according to the Daily Mirror.

The German international, who was ruled out for the season in February with an ankle injury and is unlikely to feature in any of Arsenal’s remaining six games this season, could be moved on in the summer as Arsene Wenger sets his sights on defensive targets this summer.

Jan Vertonghen has been heavily linked with a summer switch to the Emirates Stadium this season, while the Belgian international has previously hinted he would be open to a north London switch after revealing he would like to leave Ajax at the end of the season.

Last week former Holland international Ronald De Boer insisted Vertonghen was already better than Thomas Vermaelen, and would suit a move to Arsenal.

Vermaelen and Vertonghen were team-mates at Ajax and the current Arsenal defender has reportedly attempted to lure his countryman to the Emirates.

With Laurent Koscielny also impressing at centre-back for the Gunners this season, Mertesacker’s chances with Arsenal when he recovers from the problem picked up against Sunderland could be limited, with the Mirror reporting the former Werder Bremen defender’s days with Arsenal could be numbered already.

Mertesacker only completed his switch to north London in August and was a £10 million deadline day capture, but has come in for some criticism because of his lack of speed.

However the 27-year-old had won over the Arsenal-faithful before his season-ending injury, and it would come as a real surprise were he to be moved on from the club so soon after his arrival.

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