The summer transfer window may have closed, but Arsenal are reportedly in the market for a defender.
Manager Arsene Wenger was heavily criticised by many of the club’s fans and pundits for not adding another centre-back when the window was open.
The Frenchman is now reportedly looking for a central defender following the injuries Arsenal have picked up in the early weeks of the season.
Per Mertesacker, Laurent Koscielny and Calum Chambers are the only three recognised centre-backs in the Arsenal squad, although left-back Nacho Monreal is also capable of playing in central defence.
However, given the recent injury to Mathieu Debuchy, England international Chambers is likely to be played as a right-back with Hector Bellerin as his back-up. This means that Arsenal will need a centre-back as cover.
Arsenal will have to look for free agents now that the window has closed, and two of the names in circulation in the British media are Diego Lugano and Joseph Yobo.
Both have Premier League experience, but Arsenal legend Martin Keown believes that neither is good enough for the North London club.
‘With injuries, Arsene Wenger may have to get imaginative with his signings, but I’m not convinced Diego Lugano or Joseph Yobo would offer much’, he told the Daily Mail. ‘Both are coming to the end of their careers and neither was too impressive at the World Cup’.
Keown’s argument holds water. Lugano is 33 years of age, while Yobo is 34. And, perhaps more importantly, they are without a club for a reason: the big teams are not interested in them.
However, it will be slim pickings for Wenger if he does indeed delve into the free agency market. The time to sign a really good centre-back has already gone.