Arsenal's forgotten man wants permanent move away from N5

Once a promising centre back touted as one for the future, Swiss international is enjoying his present so much he wants loan deal to be made permanent.

Having not played for Arsenal since the 2011-12 season, fans may have forgotten that Johan Djourou, 27, remains a part of the club. Currently on loan at Hamburger SV in the Bundesliga, Djourou makes a defensive contribution (tackles, interceptions, blocks, clearances) every 6.8 minutes he is on the field, has integrated well into German culture and is keen to make the move a permanent one should the Gunners ratify the solution.

'I know the coach [Mirko Slomka], I love the club, I love the city. HSV is incredible,' said Djourou to Bild.

'The club has so much potential. We have to go way up. The fans are great. The mood is different than in England. If all goes well and the club also want to, I would stay.'

Even if captain Thomas Vermaelen were to leave in the summer due to the rarity of a first team place thanks to the flourishing partnership that preferred duo Laurent Koscielny and Per Mertesacker are enjoying, Arsene Wenger would likely recruit from outside the club, rather than promote from within, and could perhaps reignite interest in former target such as Cheikhou Kouyate, Ashley Williams or Aleksandr Dragovic.

Djourou is likely seen as surplus to requirements and, valued at £2.6m by, could be sold, particularly when his contract with Arsenal expires in 2015.

image: © Ronnie Macdonald

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