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Milos Kerkez: The Chelsea target Arsenal must sign as Zinchenko’s replacement

Oleksandr Zinchenko, Arsenal, 2023/24

Arsenal may join Manchester United and Chelsea in the hunt for a new left-back this summer.

Mikel Arteta has mostly used Oleksandr Zinchenko on the left-side of his defence over the past 18 months, but the Ukrainian is wanted by both Bayern Munich and Newcastle United this summer, as exclusively reported by FootballTransfers.

Arsenal have set an asking price of €45 million for the former Manchester City defender as he edges towards a possible summer exit.

Jakub Kiwior has sporadically played at left-back in recent weeks and Jurrien Timber is expected to return to full fitness soon; the Dutchman started the 2023-24 campaign as Arsenal’s first-choice left-back before suffering a serious ACL injury.

However, if Zinchenko does end up leaving the Emirates Stadium at the end of the current season, Arsenal would be wise to sign a replacement.

While Takehiro Tomiyasu, Kiwior and Timber can all play at left-back, depth will be of vital importance next year, especially considering all three of those players are more natural centre-backs and will need to provide cover for William Saliba and Gabriel Magalhaes.

Signing an out-and-out left-back would therefore be a smart idea, with Kieran Tierney potentially set to leave on a permanent deal after his loan move to Real Sociedad.

If Arsenal do pursue a new left-back amid Zinchenko’s uncertain future, Man Utd and Chelsea target Milos Kerkez could be the ideal candidate.

Milos Kerkez to Arsenal?

Milos Kerkez, Bournemouth
© IMAGO – Milos Kerkez, Bournemouth

Kerkez, 20, has shone for Bournemouth this season, following his summer move from AZ Alkmaar, and he is being watched by Man Utd and Chelsea, as per Ben Jacobs.

The Hungary international has the eighth-highest potential of any left-back in world football, according to data analytics experts SciSports, and he has proven himself on the Premier League stage in 2023-24.

Kerkez is viewed as a possible back-up for the injury-prone Luke Shaw and Ben Chilwell at Old Trafford and Stamford Bridge respectively, and while Timber may get the nod at left-back under Arteta, given his inverted ability, Kerkez would represent a more traditional option at full-back.

That may not be deemed a priority for the Gunners, but tactical flexibility is always important and adding a player with Kerkez’s skillset could be a smart idea if Zinchenko leaves.

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