According to ESPN, Arsenal have lined up Southampton defender Jose Fonte as an alternative to Shkodran Mustafi should they fail to sign the German international from Valencia.
Fonte is the third centre-back to be linked with the Gunners in the last 24 hours. Yesterday evening the BBC claimed Bayer Leverkusen’s Omer Toprak and Fenerbahce’s Simon Kjaer are also on Arsene Wenger’s radar.
Fonte was on the bench for Saints’ opening game of the season – the 1-1 draw at St Mary’s with Watford – after excelling at the back for Portugal as they won Euro 2016 in France.
The 32-year-old has played in England since 2007 when he joined Crystal Palace on loan from Benfica. He signed permanently at Selhurst Park the following year and spent two years with the Eagles before moving to Southampton, then in League One, in 2010. The Portuguese has been a regular ever since, helping the Saints reestablish themselves as Premier League stalwarts.
According to ESPN, Fonte is also wanted by Jose Mourinho at Manchester United who are likely to have the advantage given Jorge Mendes’ is the player’s agent.
Aside from us being desperate for literally any defender, we’re not sure there’s much to this. That said, he could be useful if we continue with our ‘you can only score for Arsenal if you’ve played for Southampton’ policy.