Arsenal are ready to make a bid of £6 million for Espanyol defender Hector Moreno, with the player keen to secure an exit from the La Liga outfit.
The Daily Express today claims that the Gunners are the latest side to show interest in signing the player, with Manchester United and Tottenham Hotspur having registered themselves as suitors in the past.
Wenger's need for a defender
Only yesterday did Wenger reveal that he was looking to sign two players before the end of the January transfer window, before confirming today that his scouts were working hard to capture a defender.
Whilst Moreno isn’t yet in the top-class category of player he would help to relieve the problems Wenger has faced as a result of injuries and suspension. Laurent Koscielny, Kieran Gibbs, Mathieu Debuchy and Calum Chambers have all struggled at various point in the season to be match-fit, with Debuchy out for a number of weeks as a result of hitting the advertising hoardings against Stoke City.
That has left Wenger searching for players to help shore up his back-line, with Premier League star Winston Reid and Saint Etienne captain Loic Perrin having been repeatedly mentioned as feasible targets.
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However, with Reid being lined up by Mauricio Pochettino for a switch to Tottenham Hotspur and Etienne having already made it clear that they wanted an agreement reached by this weekend, Moreno could well be a more assured option.
The main issue in any potential deal would be the influence of Van Gaal and Pochettino, who have both worked with the player before. The United boss helped Moreno to establish himself in Europe at Dutch club AZ Alkmaar, whilst Pochettino managed Espanyol before his move to Southampton.
What the future holds
One thing that can’t be called into question is the idea that Moreno would be willing to swap his current club for English shores. His agent has recently confirmed that the Mexican sees his future away from Espanyol, and the chance to play Champions League football would be more than just a nominal factor.
Given his small price-tag he seems a relative bargain, though the jury will be out for some time with regards to how well he can adapt to the rigours of Premier League football.