Arsenal Transfer News: Sokratis' Father Says Defender to Complete Move Tuesday

Tom Sunderland@@TomSunderland_Featured ColumnistJune 4, 2018

LEIPZIG, GERMANY - MARCH 03: Sokratis of Dortmund looks on during the Bundesliga match between RB Leipzig and Borussia Dortmund at Red Bull Arena on March 3, 2018 in Leipzig, Germany. (Photo by TF-Images/TF-Images via Getty Images)
TF-Images/Getty Images

The father of Borussia Dortmund defender Sokratis Papastathopoulos has said the centre-back will complete his move to Arsenal on Tuesday, adding he turned down interest from Manchester United to join the Gunners.

Charalambos Papastathopoulos spoke to Greek radio station Radio 24/7 and confirmed his son is already in England ahead of the speculated move, which he expects will be wrapped up on Tuesday (h/t James Benge of the Evening Standard): "He is happy, he is in England at the moment, and tomorrow everything will be done. The English league is the highest [level] in the world, the most competitive, and I believe he will do well."

However, Benge later suggested the senior Papastathopoulos may have been jumping the gun in terms of a completion date, with his son expected to sign a three-year deal that will keep him at the club until 2021:

A move to the Emirates Stadium would see Sokratis reunited with former Dortmund team-mates Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and Henrikh Mkhitaryan, the latter of whom came to north London via Old Trafford.

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The Mirror's Alex Smith provided more quotes from that interview, from which he detailed the Red Devils' interest in the player: "There was interest from United but he had to wait until July for them. United have a very good relationship with Dortmund; the teams talked but Sokratis chose to go to Arsenal. Arsenal had talked two years ago, but I don't know why he didn't sign."

He added Sokratis' expiring contract was another factor in his decision to leave the Westfalenstadion, and it's expected new manager Unai Emery's side will pay £16 million for the player.

Sokratis turns 30 on June 9 and would bring some much-needed experience to a back line that has bid farewell to veteran Per Mertesacker, while Laurent Koscielny will miss a good portion of the season due to a knee injury.

German football writer Lars Pollmann debated claims the deal was a bargain for Arsenal, although he agreed there was value for all parties involved:

Emery will hope the familiar connections between Black and Yellows alumni Aubameyang and Mkhitaryan will only help the Greece international's transition from the Bundesliga.

The benefits of purchasing players with a shared past seem obvious, although ESPN FC's Liam Twomey posed the suggestion that Arsenal's recruitment had become a bit lazy:

Arsenal fans might also look forward to Sokratis forming a centre-back partnership with fellow Greek defender Konstantinos Mavropanos, although the 20-year-old may struggle for first-team chances this term after appearing in only three matches last season.

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