Arsenal latest: Liverpool defender linked as Barca make Vermaelen bid

All the latest news, views and transfer rumours from the Emirates Stadium...

Arsenal's bid to replace now-Manchester City defender Bacary Sagna led to the signing of Newcastle's Mathieu Debuchy, but there was plenty of surprise when the Gunners swooped to sign Southampton youngster Calum Chambers too. The right back, 19, is viewed as the long-term successor to Debuchy, and even admitted to looking up to Arsenal winger Theo Walcott during their time together at Southampton.

"At the age of seven Southampton came in for me, and I went to play at the development centre," Chambers said. "I just went along with it and enjoyed every moment. I trained with Theo Walcott at Southampton when I was about 10. He was on the wing against me. At that age, I was looking up to him and just hoping I could be as good as him."

Walcott is still a some time away from returning to first team action having sustained a season-ending knee injury in January against Tottenham in the FA Cup. The 25-year-old would be welcomed back given his pace out wide, as the Gunners struggled to get in behind defences after the England international was sidelined - and former Arsenal defender Martin Keown says the team still need some more pace.

"I feel that you have too look at the mobility in midfield and how much pace is in there. It's not an emergency - he's got so many midfield players - but it's probably some pace that he wants to introduce to the team," 

Meanwhile, defender Thomas Vermaelen seems set for the exit, with Barcelona reportedly making a bid for the 28-year-old Belgian. However, Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger needs to bring in another centre back to replace the former Ajax man, and reports suggest that Liverpool's Daniel Agger could be a surprise target.

The left footed defender can also play at left back, like Vermaelen, and with Dejan Lovren signed from Southampton, Liverpool look set to allow the Dane to leave the club.

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