Transfer News: Arsenal outcast Pablo Mari on AC Milan radar

Arsenal defender Pablo Mari has reportedly emerged as a transfer target for Serie A giants AC Milan in the ongoing transfer window.

According to a report from Italian journalist Alessandro Sugoni on Sky Sport, via, AC Milan have set their sights on a January move for Arsenal defender Pablo Mari.

The 28-year-old centre-back signed for Arsenal from Brazilian club Flamengo in January 2020, initially on a loan deal, with his transfer made permanent in the summer later that year. However, Mari has hardly been a regular in the side under Mikel Arteta, featuring just 22 times to date.

Mari has played just three times so far this season, having fallen firmly behind Ben White, Gabriel Magalhaes and Rob Holding in the pecking order at the Emirates Stadium. Talks of an exit from the north London club have been doing the rounds for a while now, with a return to Flamengo being mooted.

Now, though, AC Milan have emerged as a possible destination for the 28-year-old Spanish defender in the mid-season trading period. The Rossoneri are in the middle of a defensive injury crisis, having lost Simon Kjaer to a long-term injury, while Fikayo Tomori is also facing fitness problems. With Alessio Romagnoli’s future beyond this season also in doubt, defensive reinforcements are needed at San Siro.

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To that end, they have shortlisted several options, such as Manchester United’s Eric Bailly and Nathan Ake of Manchester City, with Pablo Mari also emerging as a potential target.

The report states that the Rossoneri would ideally like to sign the Arsenal defender on loan until the end of the season with an option to make the transfer permanent. If such terms are not agreeable to the Gunners, the Serie A heavyweights would also be open to an outright, dry loan arrangement with no permanent clauses.

Arsenal are firmly in the picture for a top-four finish in the Premier League. So, it will certainly be interesting to see if they are willing to lose the 28-year-old midway through the season and risk affecting the depth and balance within the squad, especially at a time when teams are having to deal with Covid outbreaks.

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