Belfast Telegraph

Saturday 29 November 2014

Gunners in Mertesacker talks

Per Mertesacker
Per Mertesacker

Arsenal are in talks with Werder Bremen over the signing of Germany defender Per Mertesacker, Press Association Sport understands.

The Gunners are understood to be close to concluding a deal for Brazil left-back Andre Santos as they look to revamp their defence following Sunday's humiliating 8-2 defeat at Manchester United.

The double signing would be music to the ears of Arsenal fans, who have long urged manager Arsene Wenger to strengthen a rearguard that has, at times, been left woefully exposed in the past year.

Mertesacker, 26, would also provide much-needed height and experience at the back, standing at 6ft 6in and boasting 75 international caps.

Arsenal have also agreed a fee with Turkish giants Fenerbahce - reportedly £6.2million - for Santos with the move subject to a medical and personal terms being agreed.

The 28-year-old would help fill the void left by the sale of Gael Clichy to Manchester City and the likely departure of Armand Traore to QPR.

South Korea captain Park Chu-Young is expected to complete his move from Monaco later on Tuesday, while the Gunners have been linked with a host of other names ahead of Wednesday's transfer deadline, including Chelsea trio Florent Malouda, Alex and Yossi Benayoun.

They also last week saw a bid rejected for Bolton's Gary Cahill, a pursuit they may well abandon should a deal for Mertesacker be concluded.

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