Napoli interested in signing £95,000-a-week Arsenal centre-back

The London giants centre-back Sokratis Papastathopoulos has agreed to a move to Napoli but the deal stays far from certain, according to a report. Greece international is one of several footballers who the Gunners are willing to let go of in a bid to raise transfer funds.

Sokratis, who signed in 2018, was a crucial part of Unai Emery’s first full campaign in charge at Arsenal. However, his influence has waned since Mikel Arteta’s arrival. Napoli are keen to sign Papastathopoulos. While the Italian club have all-but sealed the signing though, the deal stays in doubt.

More specifically, Serie A giants need to remove defender Kalidou Koulibaly from their wage bill and raise funds of their own in the process, before they can push through the 32-year-old defender’s transfer. “Satisfactory offers have not arrived for Koulibaly. The club have locked Sokratis, but Nice also requested him.”

“We will see what happens in the next few days. If Napoli sell Kalidou Koulibaly on October 4th, they can send a certified e-mail the morning of the 5th to Arsenal since everything is already done for the purchase of the Greek.” Senegal international was once a top target for Man City in their efforts to revamp their back-line.

However, Man City are instead closing in on the club-record signing of Benfica centre-back Ruben Dias. Napoli spent big to bring in centre-forward Victor Osimhen from Lille and his signing has sparked a need to sell.

As well as Kalidou Koulibaly, Arkadiusz Milik is reportedly a target for a move away. Giallorossi had reportedly come close to signing the Poland centre-forward before the deal stalled.