Arsenal will reportedly use Switzerland’s World Cup encounter with Ecuador on Sunday as an opportunity to scout Stephan Lichtsteiner, with Arsene Wenger considering options to replace Bacary Sagna at right-back.
It was confirmed on Friday that Sagna had agreed a free transfer to Manchester City, which will be completed following the expiration of his Arsenal contract, and Wenger has identified the acquisition of a replacement as a priority for the summer window.
Lichtsteiner is the latest name reported to have been outlined as a potential successor to the France international, and The Mirror claim that the Gunners will be watching the Juventus player as he makes his World Cup bow.
The 30-year-old will be in action for Switzerland against Ecuador in the opening match of Group D, and his performance will be scrutinised by Arsenal scouts. Wenger wants an experienced operator to replace Sagna, and Lichtsteiner would appear to fit the bill.
Lichtsteiner has won three consecutive Serie A titles with Juventus, having joined the club from Lazio in 2011, and has gained vital experience of Champions League football during his fruitful spell in Turin.
£9m could do it
He does, however, have just one year remaining on his Juventus contract, and the club would reportedly consider selling him for £9 million this year. But despite Lichtsteiner’s qualities, it would be quite an outlay from Arsenal for a player who will turn 31 in January.
Wenger has been notoriously reluctant to invest significantly in players aged over 30, which has resulted in Arsenal losing a number of star players in the past. A more likely signing for Arsenal this summer would be Serge Aurier, who enjoyed a breakthrough season with Toulouse.