Arsenal

Arsenal star William Saliba is reportedly part of a three-man transfer shortlist for Real Madrid as manager Carlo Ancelotti looks to bolster his defense next summer.

According to Fichajes, the Italian tactician wants to let Nacho Fernandez leave once the defender’s contract runs out at the end of the season. Ancelotti is not pushing for renewal as he wants better quality centre-backs.

Keeping this in mind, Los Blancos have drawn up a three-man shortlist, of which Saliba is a part. The French centre-back waited three years for his senior debut with the Gunners but it was seemingly worth the wait.

He has been one of the best in his position this season, scoring twice and assisting once in 11 games across competitions. Moreover, he is just 21 years old and will only get better from hereon.

Villarreal’s Pau Torres is another option for Madrid. Like Saliba, the Spain international’s contract expires in the summer of 2024, which could play in Real Madrid’s favor.

Teams could be willing to do business on a cut-price deal next year if the players make it clear they don’t want to renew their respective contracts. The most financially sound option out of the three would be that of Milan Skriniar.

The Inter Milan centre-back could become a free agent at the end of the season if he doesn’t put pen to paper on a deal. He is one of the best defenders in Serie A and was influential in their Scudetto triumph during the 2020-21 campaign.

The Slovakia international scored thrice in 32 Serie A games during that season. At 27, he is also playing in the prime years of his career and could be an ideal fit in Real Madrid’s defense.

Arsenal star took revenge on Real Madrid by foiling William Saliba transfer

Arsenal captain Martin Odegaard advised Saliba to reject an approach from Real Madrid this summer, according to a report from El Nacional last month. Saliba is also believed to have been on Barcelona’s radar during that time.

The Norway international, who is now the Gunners’ captain, was pushed out of the Santiago Bernabeu after failing to establish himself there. Arsenal paid £30 million to sign him in the summer of 2021 after an initial loan deal.

It is reported that he took revenge on the Madrid-based giants by telling Saliba not to join them in the recently-concluded transfer window. Odegaard has made himself one of manager Mikel Arteta’s most important players at The Emirates.

He has three goals and two assists in nine league games this campaign.

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