Borussia Dortmund defender Sokratis Papastathopoulos’ contract at Signal Iduna Park will runs out at the end of next season. The 29-year-old has refused to extend his current deal, according to the Bundesliga outfit sporting director, Michael Zorc.
“Until now discussions haven’t left us with the impression there will be an extension,” Zorc told Ruhr Nachrichten.
According to the German publication Bild, Dortmund are looking to strengthen the defence in the summer transfer window. For this to happen, they will have to offload players and Dortmund want to start with sanctioning Papastathopoulos’ sale.
The same report again claims it’s likely Papastathopoulos will join Arsenal for a fee of around €20m this summer. The Greek international has been offered two-year deal with the north London club and Dortmund have already identified Mainz’s Abdou Diallo as his replacement.
Arsene Wenger has stepped down as the Gunners manager after 22 years. The Frenchman’s successor must make strengthening Arsenal’s defence a priority in the transfer window.
Per Mertesacker has already announced his retirement, while Laurent Koscielny has been sidelined long-term due to an injury he suffered against Atletico Madrid. This leaves Arsenal with Shkodran Mustafi, Calum Chambers and Konstantinos Mavropanos as the other centre-backs in the squad.
Having invested heavily in January, Arsenal’s new manager is unlikely to be handed unlimited funds to bring in the players he wants. Thus, signing Papastathopoulos for €20m could be good transfer business for the Premier League side.