Kostas Manolas’ future may finally have been decided after the centre-back reportedly agreed to join Arsenal in a £47m transfer this summer.
Who Scored have exclusively claimed that the Roma defender has agreed personal terms to move to the Emirates in the close season, in a move for one of Europe’s most sought-after players that the Gunners will see as a massive victory over their rivals.
Manolas has been linked with a litany of European heavyweights Manchester United, Chelsea and Barcelona throughout the season, but it is Arsenal who are now believed to have secured his signature, and the Greece international will head to London from Italy’s capital at the end of the 2016/17 campaign.
Manolas had been expected to seal fresh terms with a new long-term deal at Roma, but talks are said to have stalled as Arsenal swooped to lure him into joining their Premier League cause.
Gunners boss Arsene Wenger has been wanting to add fresh blood to his defensive options, and the arrival of Manolas will certainly add competition to his backline with the likes of Laurent Koscielny, Shkodran Mustafi, Per Mertesacker and Gabriel Paulista already vying for the two centre back positions in Wenger’s side.
Despite Mertesacker being handed a 12-month extension, it remains to be seen what effect his season-long knee injury will have on the Germany international. Reservations over Gabriel’s ability to consistently play at the highest level, too, are thought to be of concern, hence Arsenal’s move for Manolas.
Roma had been dead set against allowing the 25-year-old to leave the Stadio Olimpico halfway through the season, particularly with I Lupi pushing Juventus hard for this season’s Serie A title. Luciano Spalletti’s side sit one place and four points off the defending league champions, and want Manolas to help them secure a first league trophy in 16 years before his possible departure.
Manolas has been on Roma’s books for the past three seasons after he completed an £11m summer move from Olympiakos. The 27-times capped international has featured almost 110 times for Roma during his stay, and is currently contracted to the club until June 2019.
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