Arsenal linked to Kostas Manolas as Thomas Vermaelen replacement

Arsene Wenger has reportedly identified Olympiakos' Kostas Manolas as a potential transfer target for Arsenal after losing Thomas Vermaelen.

Arsene Wenger has wasted no time in drafting in a replacement for Thomas Vermaelen, as he reportedly is targeting Kostas Manolas as the man to fill the void left by the Belgian’s departure.

Vermaelen left the Emirates to join Barcelona over the weekend in a £15 million move and Wenger has already confirmed that he is trying to sign a centre-back to cover for the loss of his former club-captain.

That man is thought to be Manolas, who has been linked with a host of Premier League clubs already this summer.

The defender is currently playing for Olympiacos and has impressed with his performances both in the Greek top flight and in the Champions League in recent times.

At 23-years-old he is a decent age to be developed, too, and doesn’t carry the reputation that Vermaelen did to demand regular first-choice football.

The Arsenal starting centre-back pairing is settled, with Laurent Koscielny and Per Metersacker making up one of the most formidable partnerships in the Premier League, but a lack of cover has caused Wenger to dip into the market again.

So far, he is utilised new signing Calum Chambers at the heart of his defence, but the French manager has already expressed that he feels his future lies in a defensive midfield position and the signing of Manolas may mean he gets more chances in this position in the future.

The 23-year-old played 25 times for Olympiacos last season and was also part of Greece’s World Cup campaign – where they reached the last 16.

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