Reports: Arsenal in talks with Mathieu Debuchy

Jeff Gross

The search for a new right back may be close to an end, with Sagna's competitor the target.

According to Infosport+, and more pertinently, L'Equipe, Newcastle's 28-year old right back, Mathieu Debuchy, is in advanced talks with Arsenal to replace Bacary Sagna. There is no word on a potential price, but The Journal, a paper covering Newcastle upon Tyne, report that Newcastle have put a £12m price on the French International.

Debuchy has been, until now, first choice for Didier Deschamps' France side ahead of Bacary Sagna, but that does not mean he is better. He's a more attacking player and makes more positional errors, such errors that probably cannot be corrected as they could be with the younger Serge Aurier. Having said that, Debuchy won more aerial duels than any Arsenal defender bar Sagna, a key component in replacing what he did on goal kicks and in the penalty box. Furthermore, Debuchy's age means he is only a bridge between Sagna and either Carl Jenkinson, or more likely Hector Bellerin, with the latter a more promising proposition to be first choice than the former.

Neither Aurier nor Debuchy are superior defensively to Sagna. Indeed, there are few right backs available, perhaps none, that are. At the very least, Debuchy has Premier League experience, and will bridge the gap between Sagna and Bellerin. If Arsenal are to be stable on counter attacks, though, they will probably need to sign a defensive midfielder who can run faster and cover more ground than Mikel Arteta, unless Arsenal are to rely upon Aaron Ramsey for everything next season. Morgan Schneiderlin, anyone?

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