Arsenal are reportedly preparing a summer move to sign Swansea City centre-back Ashley Williams, according to reports in the Metro.
The Gunners have been long time admirers of the Welsh international and have been tracking him from last summer when they were first linked, however the Swans managed to fend off the interest.
The report states that Arsenal are set to reignite their interest in bringing Williams to the Emirates in the coming transfer window. The 29 year old has one year left on his contract at the Liberty Stadium and has not yet signed an extension with the Welsh club.
The Wales international is now considering a move away this summer. His situation has alerted Arsenal, who are looking to bring in reinforcements to add more quality to his side’s central defending position.
Swansea will allow Williams to leave the club for a transfer fee of £3 million and the Gunners are reportedly ready to pay it to the Welsh club. The defender has been at the club since 2008 and has made 249 appearances, scoring 12 goals. He has also led the Swans to the Premier League by helping them beat Reading in the Championship play-offs during the 2010-11 season.
He has been a defensive rock for Swansea and was one of the reasons why the Welsh club have an impressive home defensive record since they returned to the top flight. He’s quite an imposing physical figure and is an authoritative defender, who isn’t afraid to impose himself over the opposition. His main strength is his ability to intercept play and also blocking shots, which is important when playing a higher defensive line like the Gunners do.
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He is no stranger to possession football and knows how to pass the ball short to midfield and also to play the ball long to wingers. He is a real leader, whose determination can rub off on other players and he is also a noisy defender who simply takes control of basic defensive situations, barking out orders to teammates.
His all round play and years of the similar style of football at Swansea City would see him slot into the Arsenal defence with ease and offer good competition to the current players. We will need to up the bid if we are to sign him, but he would be an attractive signing given the need for squad strengthening, given the likely departures of Sagna and Vermaelen.
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