Arsene Wenger has his eyes sets on a January move for Manchester United and England defender Chris Smalling, according to the Daily Mail.
The Gunners are in a bit of a predicament after losing Mathieu Debuchy to what looks like a long term injury. With Bacary Sagna and Thomas Vermaelen sold to Manchester City and Barcelona respectively, Wenger's side are a little frail at the back.
Wenger wants Smalling
It was reported last month that Vermaelen's move to Manchester United was blocked by Arsene Wenger after the Frenchman demanded Chris Smalling to be involved in any kind of player plus cash deal. United manager Louis van Gaal refused and Vermaelen subsequently signed for Catalan giants Barcelona.
United, like Arsenal, are not immune when it comes to defensive frailties. The Mancunians have been left with only three established central defenders after losing club legends Rio Ferdinand & Nemanja Vidic to Queens Park Rangers & Inter Milan respectively.
With Phil Jones and Jonny Evans falling victims to recurring injuries, it is unlikely that Van Gaal would sell Smalling in January unless he has a replacement lined up.
Wenger's side were heavily criticised after their dismal showing against Borussia Dortmund in the Champions League group stage. Wenger started the game with Héctor Bellerín and Kieran Gibbs on either side of the defense and was left nonplussed as Henrikh Mkhitaryan, Ciro Immobile and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang marauded forward from every angle to make life miserable for the young fullbacks.
Fingers were pointed at Gibbs and Bellerin, who as far as one can tell, were ordered to push higher up the pitch by Wenger, and in the process, left huge pockets of space for Aubameyang and co. to exploit.
Arsenal fans would be hoping that to be a one-off thing after seeing their side complete an impressive 3-0 league victory over Aston Villa at Villa Park on Saturday.
Arsenal have Calum Chambers as their main back up to central defensive pairing of Per Mertesacker & Laurent Koscielny. But Wenger wants to add more experience and quality at the back and believes that England international Smalling fits the job description.