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Report: Arteta is closely monitoring the progress of Arsenal 'gladiator' currently on loan

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Shkodran Mustafi and Sokratis Papastathopoulos have left Arsenal and it looks like it’s only a matter of time before David Luiz joins them.

That’s three experienced centre-halves gone in the space of six months and Mikel Arteta will have a decision to make in the summer.

Should the Arsenal boss stick to the defenders he currently has or should he dive into the transfer market to bring in a new one? Football London claim that Arteta is closely monitoring one centre-back who’s currently on loan, but it’s not William Saliba.

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Arsenal are closely monitoring Mavropanos’ progress

Konstantinos Mavropanos left Arsenal on loan over a year ago. He spent six months at Nuremberg last season before switching to top-flight side Stuttgart at the start of this campaign.

Dinos, as he likes to be called, missed a number of games this term after having to undergo surgery on his meniscus. He is now back and his performances have reportedly caught Arteta’s eye.

The report claims that Arsenal are closely monitoring the progress of the Greek defender. Mavropanos will be hoping to get a chance to impress Arteta in the summer, and if he can continue playing as well as he has, there is no reason why he can’t convince the boss to give him a run in the team.

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“He’s our gladiator! He’s a monster in terms of physique. And when he makes a mistake, he hums around some Greek swear words. I like that. He’s just a tough dog,” said Stuttgart boss Pellegrino Matarazzo about Mavropanos. (Football London)

That is massive praise but there is a lot of difference between playing for a relegation-threatened team in Germany and starting regularly for Arsenal.

However, he has a good chance. With William Saliba getting himself involved in regular drama off the pitch and with Luiz set to leave in the summer, a spot might open up for Mavropanos if he can impress Arteta.

The Arsenal boss has shown already that he will give opportunities to players who deserve it. Displays on loan have shown he warrants a chance, but his performances in training when he returns for pre-season will give Arteta a clearer picture.

Photo by Stuart MacFarlane/Arsenal FC via Getty Images
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