Arsenal Transfer News: Charles Watts Says Gunners Are Still Interested In 18-Year-Old Despite Him Signing A New Contract

Arsenal Manager Mikel Arteta
Arsenal Manager Mikel Arteta

Renowned journalist Charles Watts has claimed Arsenal will go after Ajax defender Jorrel Hato if they choose to strengthen the left-back position in the summer transfer window. Watts also played down reports crediting the Gunners with an interest in Ferdi Kadioglu, saying he did not have much confidence in links with players in Turkey.

Arsenal Tipped To Sign A Left-Back This Summer

After just falling short in the Premier League race, Arsenal are preparing to push harder next season. A blockbuster summer transfer window may just be what they need to end their 20-year wait for the Premier League title.

On the Stick To Football podcast, Liverpool legend Jamie Carragher recently advised Arsenal to work on their left flank, sign a left-back and even a left-winger. He said (via the Independent):

Arsenal, rather than saying they need cover for this player or that one, need to go and buy a left back. I actually think left wing is also not good enough, even though I like Gabriel Martinelli and Leandro Trossard.”

Carragher’s comments came amid reports of Arsenal’s interest in Fenerbahce full-back Kadioglu. Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta reportedly admires the player and wants to bring him to London. According to Turkish outlet Milliyet, Arsenal tabled a £20 million ($25.47 million) bid for the player, but it was deemed insufficient by Fenerbahce.

Charles Watts Dismisses Kadioglu Links, Says Hato Is On Gunners’ Wishlist

Watts, however, does not think the Kadioglu links are credible. He instead believes Arsenal are still interested in 18-year-old Hato despite him recently extending his Ajax contract.

In his Daily Briefing column, Watts revealed:

I’m always skeptical when I hear of transfer stories linking Arsenal with players in Turkey. There are always so many of those types of stories and they never really come to fruition.

Ferdi Kadioglu is the latest to be linked, but I still believe Jorrel Hato remains the top target, should Arsenal look to strengthen the left side of defense.

He added:

The interest in Hato remains, despite him signing a new contract at Ajax, and I wouldn’t be at all surprised if they make an attempt to bring him in this summer.

He fits the bill of the type of player Arsenal like to sign and although he prefers to play as the left centre-back rather than as a left-back, I still wouldn’t rule it out. The way Arsenal play now with Ben White inverting into midfield from the right, Arsenal tend to play with the left-back slotting in alongside Gabriel and William Saliba anyway.

Hato, who came through Ajax’s academy, signed his new contract in March 2024. His new deal will keep him at the club until June 30, 2028.

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