Arsenal center-back William Saliba is set to seal a loan at Nice for the remainder of the season.
A signing of £ 27million in 2019, Saliba moved to Arsenal over the summer but has yet to play a single minute for Mikel Arteta’s senior side, and he has been surprisingly left out of the Gunners team for the Europa League.
A January exit still seemed likely, with some rumors even suggesting that Saliba could be sold for good, but Nice Matin says Saliba will only join Nice temporarily for the remainder of the campaign.
Importantly, there is no option to buy the 19-year-old, who will undergo his physical on Monday before putting pen to paper on the go.
Nice are looking for a replacement for former Bayern Munich defender Dante, who is set to miss the remainder of the campaign with an ACL injury, so Saliba can expect plenty of playing time at the Allianz Riviera .
Adrian Ursea’s team are never afraid to give young players minutes. Malang Sarr, 21, was a regular before joining Chelsea this summer, while Robson Bambu, 23, was the oldest of Nice’s three center-backs in their last game against Lorient.
It’s a move that will hopefully help Saliba rediscover his mojo. He knows the league well, having made 28 appearances for Saint-Etienne before joining Arsenal, and will be desperate to prove he’s good enough for a top side.
The teenager never managed to convince Arteta that he was ready for minutes and he never came close to arguing, although Arsenal failed to impress defensively for the vast majority of the season until now.
Saliba may not be the only center-back to leave the Emirates this month. Shkodran Mustafi and Sokratis Papastathopoulos have both been linked with moves away from the club, with Arteta keen to downsize his squad.
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