Arsenal appear to be on the verge of finally completing a deal for Hertha Berlin defender Omar Rekik after the teenage star jetted in to London on Thursday.
Arsenal reportedly agreed a £900,000 fee with the German side on deadline day of the summer window, with the talks part of Matteo Geundouzi’s loan move to the club.
However, Arsenal ran out of time to complete the deal and Rekik remained with Hertha Berlin, though there was always an expectation that the deal would be done in the January window.
The 18-year-old centre back has now fuelled rumours that an announcement is close by sharing an image of him reaching London on his Instagram stories.
While Arsenal have struggled in their defense in recent weeks, supporters should not expect to see Rekik in the first team soon with the teenager seen as a player for the future and he could be loaned out.
According to Football.London, academy manager Per Mertesacker had promised the defender frequent participation in first-team training, but regular game time in the first team may be more beneficial.
Arsenal already have issues with another young defender, William Saliba, who is yet to make his debut for the gunners and is most likely to be loaned out in the January window after a return to Saint-Etienne failed to materialise in the summer.
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Although Rekik made Hertha’s Bundesliga squad three times at the tail-end of last campaign, and has even trained with the first team, he is yet to make a senior appearance, only playing for the youth team this season – likely due to his impending transfer to Arsenal.
He is highly regarded and has received offers from some other European teams and Arsenal will assess him first hand before making a decision over his future.
Arsenal are expected to be active in January with Mikel Arteta keen to improve his team and technical director Edu has conceded the club need a creative midfielder.