Arsenal target looking to swap Ligue 1 for Premier League

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Nice defender Nemanja Pejcinovic could be set for a surprise move to Arsenal after the 26-year-old defender’s contract with the Ligue 1 club expired.

Arsene Wenger may have one eye on Ivory Coast full-back Serge Aurier during the World Cup but away from the festivities in Brazil the Arsenal manager could have already identified an additional defensive recruit in Nemanja Pejcinovic.

The Serbian defender has been linked with a summer move to the Emirates after seeing out his contract with Ligue 1 side Nice.

Signed by the French side back in the summer of 2010, Pejcinovic has steadily built a reputation as a reliable centre-back and the 26-year-old could prove the ideal addition to the current Arsenal squad, amid reports linking Thomas Vermaelen with a move away from the club.

The defender would undoubtedly be open to such a move, having taken to the official Nice club website to offer his thanks to the fans and explain the reasons behind his departure.

"My current ambitions are currently higher than what the club can offer me today, he said.

"I have always wanted to play in the Champions League or at least in some other European competition. It is a dream I have had since I was little ... I now have the opportunity to do so."

Though the last of these quotes offers something of a clue as to his potential destination, Arsenal are likely to be one of a number of teams tracking the Serbian.

But while some Gooners may express reservations about signing the relatively-untested defender, it’s important to remember the impact that has been made by another centre-back who was plucked from Ligue 1 obscurity – Laurent Kocielny.

Signed from Lorient for £8.45 million back in 2010, the Frenchman has gone from strength-to-strength at the Emirates and is now set to star for France at the World Cup.

Here’s hoping Pejcinovic falls into the same category, as opposed to the one occupied by the likes of Pascal Cygan, Igor Stepanovs and Oleg Luzhnyi.

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