Sunday’s 3-2 loss at Southampton once again illustrated the latest need for Arsenal to make a long-term investment in a new centre-back.
Despite Laurent Koscielny making a welcome return from injury, was manager Unai Emery forced to play Stephan Lichtsteiner and Granit Xhaka next to the Arsenal captain in a back-three formation due to unavailability of Shkodran Mustafi and Sokratis Papastathopoulos.
But if the Spaniard wants to find a young and talented defender that has already proved his worth then he should monitor Ajax Amsterdam sensation Matthijs de Ligt
The 19-year-old was named the 2018 Golden Boy winner on Sunday evening after an emphatic year for both club and country that has seen a dramatic turn around in fortunes for Ajax and the Dutch national side, both of which De Ligt is part of.
Given the season-ending injury to Rob Holding last week at Old Trafford, Arsenal will certainly be looking to sharpen their defence with a up-and-coming centre-back who can have a huge future at the Emirates.
Koscielny, 33, is also surely nearing the end of his time at the North London club and would it be difficult for him to match and beat the capabilities of an energetic talent like De Ligt.
And the young Dutchman has already grown in experience since making his debut for Ajax in 2016, so much so that he has captained the club this season in all competitions. Most notably, he led Ajax in the Champions League group stage, that saw them qualify for the Round of 16.
Given the level he has risen to at such a young age, many clubs could soon start bidding for his services.
But if there’s one of them that should take initiative and think ahead from this season then it should be Arsenal. De Ligt would be a great addition for the Emery system that has been brought to Arsenal.
The manager has proven to get the best out of his players so far this campaign and would it be really exciting to see what a player like De Ligt would achieve under his watch.
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