Arsenal joined crowded race for £70m-rated defensive rock

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Arsenal have entered the crowded race to secure services of in-demand Dutch defender Matthijs de Ligt from Ajax, according to the reports.

The 19-year-old defender is believed to be on the radar of Serie A champions Juventus, Man Utd, Barcelona and Manchester United after another impressive campaign with the Dutch giants.

The Sun reported that the Gunners are also interested in securing the services of the Dutchman, who has worked closely with the North London club legends Marc Overmars and Dennis Bergkamp at Ajax.

The 19-year-old is believed to be a huge admirer of the Gunners, however, Emery must convince the board to give him £70m to lure him at Emirates Stadium.

Emery has a £40m budget this summer, though that could potentially double if the Gunners qualify for the Champions League and get rid off the wages of Mesut Ozil.

De Ligt has joined the Dutch giants at the age of 9 and has made just short of 100 games at senior level, becoming the first centre-back to win the Golden Boy award.

Meanwhile, Manchester United defender Eric Bailly’s future at Old Trafford is reportedly ‘under threat’ as the Red Devils plan to sign a world-class centre-back ahead of the next season.

The news will come as a huge boost for Man Utd’s direct Premier League rivals Arsenal who tried to secure services of Ivorian defender during the January transfer window.

Former Villarreal defender has impressed during his first campaign at Old Trafford following a 2016 move from La Liga, however, injuries harmed his 2017-18 season and he has struggled for regular first-team football this campaign.