Arsenal in pole position to sign 27-year-old Serie A star

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Arsenal transfer target Kostas Manolas has hinted that his five-year spell with Roma could come to an end this transfer window.

The 27-year-old moved to Roma from Olympiacos back in 2014 and has since established himself as one of the most consistent defenders in Serie A.

However, he is one of many players tipped to depart the Italian club following their failure to secure Champions League football with Nicolo Zaniolo and Cengiz Under, among those linked with moves elsewhere.

Kostas Manolas has been frequently touted with a potential move to England in recent years, and it has been claimed in Italy that Arsenal are ready to match a £32 million release clause in his contract to bring him to London.

Addressing his future after Roma’s 2-1 victory over Parma on the final day of the campaign Kostas Manolas told reporters: ‘I don’t know if I’ll stay here.’

The Gunners are unlikely to have a free run at the Greece international, though, with Manchester United also looking to bring him to England while Napoli and Juventus could offer the centre-back the opportunity to remain in Serie A.

Unai Emery has prioritised the signing of a centre-back this summer in a bid to address the club’s shortcomings in that problematic area.

Among the names linked to Arsenal are Barcelona’s Samuel Umtiti, Saint-Etienne teenager William Saliba and Espanyol’s Mario Hermoso.

The North London club conceded considerably more goals than the top-four Premier League sides and also let in more than mid-table clubs Everton, Wolves and Leicester City as well as bottom half Newcastle United this term.