RICCARDO CALAFIORI TO ARSENAL DEAL SET TO RESULT IN 'POPULAR' PLAYER BEING SOLD

Arsenal's move to sign Bologna's Riccardo Calafiori would likely see 'popular' defender Jakub Kiwior leave the club amid interest from Italy.

After a stellar Euro 2024 campaign, Italy's centre-half Calafiori suddenly became a man in demand. He has received interest from all over Europe, namely from several Premier League clubs.

Mikel Arteta's side look set to win the race for him, however, and a fee is to be discussed this week. The idea is that Calafiori can join the squad before they set off on their pre-season tour of the USA.

As with many incomings, outgoings are inevitable. According to The Athletic, Arsenal will likely offload one of their defenders to make room for the Italian, and Kiwior is reportedly the prime candidate, despite his supposed 'popularity' at the club.

The Polish defender can play either centre-half or left-back – the exact parameters Calafiori would fill were he to sign.

Calafiori would have caught Arsenal’s eye at Euro 2024, as he impressed for a poor Italian side who were knocked out by Switzerland in the round of 16. And Kiwior looks set to be replaced by the in-form defender, despite only signing for Arsenal during 2023's January window.

When Kiwior was linked with a move away in March, Arteta said: "We have made it difficult for him for two reasons. One, because he hasn’t played that many minutes, and the second one because we asked him to play in a position that he’s never played in before.

"So it’s like putting William Saliba as a full-back, and saying, 'There we go, tomorrow go and perform and do what we have to do!' It’s all about (adapting to players needs).

"In the end you can’t ask players to do things that they don’t feel especially capable of doing in a natural way, so we have to tweak a few things to make sure that the players play to their strengths."

Another player who could be on the chopping block is Oleksandr Zinchenko. Valued at £38million by the Gunners, it is reported that Kiwior remains more likely to be the one who goes due to him gathering more interest than the Ukrainian.

Both AC Milan and Inter are said to have shown an interest in the Polish defender, whom Arsenal value at £12.5million – a fee that would see them make a near £8million loss on their January signing.

Despite having only spent a season and a half at the Emirates, should Calafiori's move be made official, Kiwior could see himself out of game time and waving goodbye to north London.

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2024-07-10T04:24:38Z dg43tfdfdgfd