Arsenal close in on Brighton defender Ben White


Ben White of England poses during the official UEFA Euro 2020 media access day at St George's Park Futsal Arena on June 08, 2021 in Burton upon Trent, England.

Arsenal are closing in on a deal to sign Brighton & Hove Albion defender Ben White, according to David Ornstein of The Athletic.

The 23-year-old is currently away on holiday after featuring in England’s 26-man squad for Euro 2020.

Mikel Arteta has several options at centre-back already. However, the Spaniard is seeking a more comfortable partner for Gabriel on the right-hand side.

White enjoyed an excellent first full season at Brighton last year. The 23-year-old had spent the last two campaigns out on loan, but Graham Potter rewarded White for his patience and efforts with a place in the starting line-up.

The centre-back featured in 36 out of 38 games in the Premier League for the Seagulls during the 2020/21 season. He often featured on the right of a back three, entrusted with bringing the ball out from the back and playing through the lines.

White averaged 1.4 tackles per game in the Premier League, as well as 1.7 interceptions. As well as this, he also averaged a pass completion rate of 83.2%. IMG-20210717-125053-583

Speaking about the defender last year to Brighton & Hove Independent, Potter said: “He is a level headed guy who wants to play football and of course he wants to do it at the highest level, just like you want all those players to have those ambitions.

“He gets on with his work and he was totally professional in the summer despite the noise from outside the club, which you can’t control.

“He’s a smart guy and we will carry on with our work and help him to enjoy his football, which is the most important thing.” IMG-20210717-125039-253

According to Fabrizio Romano, a deal for Sambi Lokonga could be announced alongside the Brighton defender in the coming days. The box-to-box midfielder is currently undergoing a period of quarantine before his move from Belgian side Anderlecht is completed.

The Gunners are also looking to sign another goalkeeper to provide competition for Bernd Leno. According to The Athletic, their number one priority is Sheffield United goalkeeper Aaron Ramsdale, who was also away with England at Euro 2020 this summer.

However, they are also one of several sides eyeing a move for West Bromwich Albion goalkeeper Sam Johnstone, should they fail to land their number one target.

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