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Why Arsenal must move for €12m ex-Manchester United target

Arsenal are reportedly interested in Juventus defender Angelo Ogbonna, and would be wise to take him to North London with a €12 million price-tag.

Angelo Ogbonna was a coveted commodity on the transfer market last summer, with Manchester United heavily linked with a move for his services.

Ultimately Juventus would prevail in the race for his signature, however, prying him away from fierce local rivals Torino in a deal worth up to €15 million.

But whilst Granata fans were heartbroken and supporters of the Old Lady were thrilled with their capture of the highly-rated centre-back at the time, the situation has changed one year on.

Ogbonna struggled mightily during his first term in Bianconero, making just 16 appearances even as Giorgio Chiellini, Leonardo Bonucci and Andrea Barzagli all suffered injuries.

Adapting to life with Serie A’s most dominant club of late proved a tough task for the 26-year-old, even with prior experience playing in the three-man defence ex-boss Antonio Conte preferred under Giampiero Ventura at Torino.

And with Conte now gone from the Juventus bench and former Milan coach Massimiliano Allegri in, Ogbonna faces yet another transition after a tough season.

Allegri’s teams typically play with a four-man back line, meaning competition for a place will be even heavier - and Juventus will no longer need to carry five centre-backs in the squad.

According to Sportmediaset, it’s Ogbonna that could be in the firing line, even ahead of utility man Martin Caceres, a central defender by trade.

Arsenal - along with Atletico Madrid and Sevilla - are said to be eyeing a move for the Italian. Juventus are reportedly willing to sell for €12 million, less than the base €13 million fee agreed with Torino last summer.

But would shelling out €12 million for Ogbonna be a wise bit of business for the Gunners?

Arsene Wenger’s side is certainly light in central defence. With Thomas Vermaelen seemingly set for an exit starting duo Laurent Koscielny and Per Mertesacker would be the only centre-backs in the squad.

Like Vermaelen, Ogbonna is left-footed - both Koscielny and Mertesacker are right-footed - and also has experience playing as a left-back like his Belgian counterpart.

The crux of the matter is that Arsenal have a need and Ogbonna fits the bill. Not only is he a good fit to replace Vermaelen, but also boasts pace and a powerful frame that suit him to Premier League football.

After a tough year in Turin, backing up Mertesacker and Koscielny would give the Italy international a chance to ease into life at the Emirates and rediscover the confidence that once made him so sought after.

For €12 million - not to mention wages in the region of €30,000 per week - Arsenal would be getting a talented player that could potentially thrive at the Emirates, and fill a hole in the squad.

If the Gunners interest in Ogbonna is indeed genuine, they would do well to take the ex-Torino man off Juventus’ hands as bringing him to North London could pay dividends down the road.

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