Arsenal news: Chiefs enter talks for Juventus defender as they learn January transfer cost | Football | Sport

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Arsenal have made contact with the representatives of Juventus defender Merih Demiral with a January transfer possibly in the pipeline, according to reports.

Demiral joined Juventus from Sassuolo in the summer for £16.2million but has made just one league start under Maurizio Sarri.

The 21-year-old centre-back is nonetheless seen as a talent for the future in Turin and the club want to keep him.

That has not stopped Arsenal entering talks with the Turkey international’s representatives, though.

Turkish Football, a publication in his homeland, claim Arsenal chiefs have been chatting with his entourage after first showing interest in the summer.

There are enquiries over whether a January transfer would be possible with Juventus reluctant to sell but willing to consider offers in the region of £26m (€30m).

It is believed the Old Lady would be more open to a six-month loan deal but Arsenal would rather make a permanent centre-half signing.

Demiral is keen to play in the Premier League one day but there is no ostensible rush to flee Juventus.

Arsenal’s plans to recruit a centre-back may have been brought forward by William Saliba breaking his foot.

The 18-year-old was signed for £27m in the summer and loaned back to Saint-Etienne for the season.

His lengthy lay-off may be of concern to Arsenal, though, with his rehabilitation potentially causing issues for the rest of the campaign.

Saliba felt the decision was right to head back to his boyhood club after signing for Arsenal.

“Well, it was important first of all because I wanted to prove myself for another year at Saint-Etienne, before I come to try and establish myself here at Arsenal,” he said.

“This is a big club, and when you come here, you need to be ready.

“So I’m going to try and have a great season with the club that developed me in order to be ready for Arsenal.”

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