Arsenal Transfer News: Latest Rumours on Kalidou Koulibaly and Calum Chambers

Matt JonesFeatured ColumnistJuly 17, 2017

ROME, ITALY - APRIL 09:  Kalidou Koulibaly of SSC Napoli in action during the Serie A match between SS Lazio and SSC Napoli at Stadio Olimpico on April 9, 2017 in Rome, Italy.  (Photo by Giuseppe Bellini/Getty Images)
Giuseppe Bellini/Getty Images

Arsenal have reportedly reached out to representatives for Napoli defender Kalidou Koulibaly to discuss a potential summer transfer.

According to an exclusive piece from TuttoMercatoWeb (h/t Tom Coast of Sport Witness), the Gunners have put the feelers out to see if Koulibaly would fancy a move to the Emirates Stadium. It's suggested Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger is keen to add another centre-back to his ranks.

However, it's added in the report that Koulibaly isn't totally convinced by the prospect of a move to the Premier League side. Arsenal's enquiries have reportedly been met by a "blue wall," as the Partenopei consider the player as a vital part of their XI.

Since arriving at the Stadio San Paolo in 2014, the 26-year-old has gone on to establish himself as one of the premier defenders in the Italian top flight. Sports journalist Jack Rathborn rates him highly:

Koulibaly is a player who would cope well with English football. The Senegal international is a formidable opponent for forwards, as he's blessed with enough pace to track runs and is so dominant when it comes to physical duels.

Koulibaly has been colossal at the back for Napoli.
Koulibaly has been colossal at the back for Napoli.Valerio Pennicino/Getty Images

At Napoli, the team's attacking style often means Koulibaly is exposed in defence, but he has the dynamic qualities and sharp instincts needed to thrive in these sorts of situations. As these numbers from WhoScored.com illustrate, he's excellent in possession too:

Given Arsenal shone utilising a three-man defence late last term, it wouldn't be a shock to see Wenger on the hunt for another quality centre-back.

Even so, not only is Koulibaly said to be unsure about moving to the Gunners, it's added in the report that he would cost in excess of €55 million (£48 million) to prise away from Napoli. Consequently, it would be a surprise if these links gathered much more momentum.

        

Crystal Palace Want Calum Chambers

Middlesbrough's English defender Calum Chambers controls the ball during the English Premier League football match between Chelsea and Middlesbrough at Stamford Bridge in London on May 8, 2017. / AFP PHOTO / Adrian DENNIS / RESTRICTED TO EDITORIAL USE. No
ADRIAN DENNIS/Getty Images

Arsenal defender Calum Chambers has reportedly emerged as a possible transfer target for Crystal Palace.

The versatile 22-year-old spent the previous term on loan at Middlesbrough, having struggled to secure a regular spot in the Arsenal side since his move from Southampton in 2014. According to Sky Sports News HQ, the Eagles want to snap up the youngster.

In the piece it's suggested the Gunners will not sell Chambers on the cheap, as they value him in the region of £20 million.

It would be an astounding amount of money for a player who has barely featured for Arsenal since his debut season, although the former Saints man is evidently a talent.

As noted by Scouted Football's Twitter account, he impressed during the summer's UEFA European Under-21 Championship for England:

He was also consistent for Boro despite their relegation, forming a strong partnership with Ben Gibson at the back. Chambers is intelligent, reads the game well and is also adept at doing a job in any position across the defence. Provided he develops, he would be an asset for Arsenal.

Should Arsenal continue to set up with a three-man defence, opportunities may present themselves for Chambers at the Emirates Stadium in 2017-18. Still, the chance to join a team where he would be a key man and given the chance to really kick on would also be tempting at this stage of his career.