Arsenal hope to conclude a deal with Manchester City to sign Oleksandr Zinchenko early next week.
It is understood the total transfer fee for the Ukraine international will be worth in the region of £30m, with personal terms not expected to be a problem.
Zinchenko has spent just over six years at Man City after joining the club as a teenager from Russian side Ufa.
The 25-year-old, who was coached by Mikel Arteta during the Arsenal manager’s spell as assistant to Man City boss Pep Guardiola, can cover a variety of positions, including left-back and central midfield.
Arsenal have been in the market for a left-sided defender and were trying to sign Manchester United bound Lisandro Martinez from Ajax.
Man City, meanwhile, want to bring in a left-back and remain interested in Brighton’s Marc Cucurella, as Sky SportsNews revealed back in June.
The 23-year-old enjoyed a hugely successful first season in the Premier League after joining from Getafe in a deal worth around £15m last summer.
Brighton do not want to let Cucurella leave and it would take a huge offer for them to sell given he has four years remaining on his contract at the Amex.
Why versatile, reliable Zinchenko fits Arsenal’s bill
Sky Sports football journalist Sam Blitz:
“Mikel Arteta has been looking at additions at left-back and central midfield in this summer transfer window. The Gunners wanted Ajax’s Lisandro Martinez, who has experience in playing in both positions as well as center half, but now looks destined for Manchester United. Leicester City’s Youri Tielemans has also been looked at but that interest has cooled in recent weeks.
“There is reason why the Arsenal manager needs support in that role. At left-back, Kieran Tierney has picked up long-term injuries in the last two seasons at crucial moments and while Nuno Tavares was signed as cover last summer, the young Portuguese full-back struggled in the big moments and ended up behind Cedric Soares and Granit Xhaka in the left-back pecking order come the end of the season.
“In midfield, Xhaka is a mainstay in Arteta’s team but there is little competition for his specific role. Thomas Partey, Mohamed Elneny and Albert Sambi Lokonga all compete for the same position at the base of Arsenal’s midfield, leaving Xhaka to a number 8 role .
“Should he play in midfield, a role he undertakes regularly at international level, Zinchenko would compete with Xhaka at Arsenal – and a closer look at their respective heatmaps last season shows that the two play in the same area of the pitch, even though the Ukrainian played at left-back and the Arsenal man operated from midfield.
“On the ball, Zinchenko’s passing statistics are superior to Xhaka’s – but that is to be expected given Guardiola’s City keep the ball and use it better than Arsenal. Zinchenko and City defended a lot less than Arsenal last summer, but the Ukrainian international’s defensive stats still trump Xhaka’s. Zinchenko won more tackles, interceptions and challenges in the air than the Swiss midfielder – a reminder that the two players operate in roughly the same area of the pitch.”
Read the full feature here.
Arsenal accept defeat to Man Utd in Lisandro Martinez chase
Manchester United are in the closing stages of wrapping up an agreement with Ajax for Lisandro Martinez, with Arsenal having conceded defeat in their pursuit of the Argentina international.
The 24-year-old has stated his desire to reunite with Erik ten Hag and a deal in the region of £45m is being finalised.
If all progresses as smoothly as United would like, Martinez should link up with the squad on their pre-season tour of Australia.
Jesus scores 90 seconds into Arsenal debut
Gabriel Jesus, who made the same move Zinchenko could do earlier this summer, scored 90 seconds into his first Arsenal outing as his double helped the Gunners to a 5-3 friendly victory over German second division side FC Nurnberg.
The Brazil striker came on at half-time in Germany with the Gunners 2-0 down – and made an immediate impact, scoring high in the net from Ainsley Maitland-Niles’ pass.
Mohammed Elneny then hit a wonder-strike to equalize for Mikel Arteta’s side, before two Nurnburg own goals from Christpher Schindler and Tim Handwerker gave the Gunners a 4-2 advantage.