Arsenal Transfers: 6 Defenders to Consider This January

Charlie MelmanCorrespondent IISeptember 16, 2012

Arsenal Transfers: 6 Defenders to Consider This January

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    One of the last things on the minds of many Arsenal fans after what has almost been four consecutive clean sheets is the need for another defender, but, inevitably, the question always comes up at some point during the season.

    With injuries and loss of form, you never know when an extra hand might be needed, and with a relatively thin corps of players at fullback, Arsene Wenger might want to strengthen those areas.

    Though teams don't build their foundations in January, they do add the crucial polish that can win titles and silverware. Here are six defenders who can round out a strong side.

Mateo Musacchio

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    Not that many people know about Argentine international Mateo Musacchio, but he is a very good young defender who is simply too good to be playing in the Spanish Segunda Division.

    At only 22, he has become a fixture in the Villarreal Yellow Submarine's lineup, surpassing more experienced teammates in the process, and has earned two caps for Argentina.

    Standing a little less than six feet tall, Musacchio is on the more technical side, but, with Steve Bould's tutelage, he could add some English grit to his Spanish guile.

    And, playing at such a low level, Arsenal could get him for a mean bargain.

Raul Albiol

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    I realize that this is a bit far-fetched, and I'm a fairly realistic guy, but this might actually have some legs.

    Albiol is pretty low down in Real Madrid's pecking order, with both Pepe and Sergio Ramos being routinely selected ahead of him, despite his prestige as a Spanish international.

    He obviously has some value to Madrid still, but it would be wise for Arsenal to make a move if they really want him, considering his extremely valuable versatility across the back line and in defensive midfield.

Mamadou Sakho

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    Again, a little out there, but what a deal this would be if Arsenal could actually pull it off.

    At the tender age of 22, Sakho has accumulated 125 Ligue 1 appearances for Paris Saint-Germain and has established a reputation as one of the most complete defenders in France.

    His extraordinary physical strength is useful both in his native position of center-back and on the left, and, as the captain of PSG ahead of much older players, he has that intangible leadership ability that is worth millions of dollars.

    If Arsene Wenger could convince his compatriot to switch countries, it would be one of his greatest coups in a while.

Liam Moore

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    At only 19, Moore is apparently attracting interest from Manchester United and Arsenal, and he continues his inevitable march to Leicester's first team.

    As he is not a senior player and still requires time to develop, Wenger would not have to immediately give Moore a place among the Arsenal regulars, and he would benefit from the first-class atmosphere in the Gunners' youth setup.

    If absolutely needed, he could probably be called up for the Capital One Cup or possibly the FA Cup, but Moore would mostly be the kind of forward-thinking development project who really pays dividends in the future.

Mathieu Debuchy

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    As much as we would all like to believe that the testy situation currently unfolding with Bacary Sagna is near or at a peaceful resolution, it would not be a bad idea to have a Plan B for any turn that that situation takes for the worse.

    Debuchy would be as good a replacement for his compatriot as any man available. After nine years at Lille, the French international might feel like a change as he begins to establish his place in the national team.

    With his broad range of skills, Arsene Wenger might find him an attractive buy, as he is more creative than most right backs and is stable enough in defence to be effective in the Premier League.

Mapou Yanga-Mbiwa

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    Of all the defenders on this list, Yanga-Mbiwa is the certainly the most likely to actually move to the Emirates Stadium.

    His profile is much like that of Mamadou Sakho, but with much less hype. Strong, young, very capable in defence, a one-club man, able to play on the left flank and the captain of his club, the man who lifted the Ligue 1 trophy last season would be perfectly able to step up to Arsenal.

    With his connection to Olivier Giroud, Yanga-Mbiwa could certainly be enticed to sail across the English Channel and start a productive new chapter in his career. If he became a Gunner, fans would quickly realize that he's more than a collection of consonants.