Arsenal closing in on Ben White 

Arsenal are reportedly close to completing the signing of Brighton and England defender Ben White after agreeing personal terms with the player.

White, 23, enjoyed an outstanding first season in the Premier League with the Seagulls after they rebuffed attempts from Leeds United to turn his loan move permanent in the summer of 2020.

His form under Graham Potter rewarded him with a first England call-up for the Euro 2020 warm-up matches before then earning a place in Gareth Southgate’s 26-man party for the tournament following Trent Alexander-Arnold’s injury.

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Mikel Arteta is currently looking to reshape his squad after a disappointing 8th-placed finish in the Premier League last season. That means they will have no European football and thus will be shopping in a different market to what they may have been accustomed to in the past.

White would add strength to a defence that actually performed well last term – Arsenal conceded just 39 goals in 38 Premier League games and only Manchester City and Chelsea conceded fewer.

The reported fee looks set to be around £50m including add-ons, making White the third most expensive transfer in the club’s history, as well as becoming the most expensive defender Arsenal have signed.

He is one of three names that look set to move to the Emirates in the near future, with the club also looking to tie the knot on moves for Anderlecht’s Albert Sambi Lokonga and Benfica’s Nuno Tavares. 

Lokonga, 21, will bolster Arteta’s midfield options while Tavares, 21, will provide some much-needed competition for Kieran Tierney at left-back. Lokonga and Tavares look set to join for £18m and £10m respectively.

As for White, any deal will likely be announced after Sunday’s Euro 2020 Final between England and Italy. White was left out of England’s 23-man squad for the Semi-Final win over Denmark and is yet to make an appearance at the competition, finding himself behind John Stones, Harry Maguire, Tyrone Mings and Conor Coady in the pecking order.

He is one of two Brighton players that have been linked with a move to the Emirates Stadium with Yves Bissouma also touted for a move to North London. Arsenal are also believed to be interested in White’s England teammate and Sheffield United goalkeeper Aaron Ramsdale.

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