Arsenal set to sign teenage centre back William Saliba for £27M
Transfer rumours

Arsenal set to sign teenage centre back William Saliba for £27M

Arsenal is set to sign the young Frenchman from Saint-Etienne for £27 million on a five-year contract according to ESPN. 

The Gunners will reportedly loan the 18-year-old back to Saint-Etienne next season so he can continue to gain experience in Ligue 1. Arsenal has beaten AS Roma and Borussia Dortmund to Saliba's signature after the youngster signed new terms at the French club last April. 

For his first season as a professional last year, he was one of Saint-Etienne's best players. He made his first-team debut in Ligue 1 last September against Toulouse, with his side keeping eight clean sheets in his last ten appearances in Ligue 1.  He played for the club 19 times across all competitions.

Saliba stands 6 foot 3 inches (1.93 metres) tall and is a great athlete with pace and a high level of technical ability.

He was born in Bondy and coached by Kylian Mbappe's dad while playing at the local club AS Bondy. Incidentally, Kylian Mbappe was also born there. 

Since joining the Saint-Etienne academy in 2016, he has represented France in every age group and was part of the squad at the U20 European Championships this summer.

With Saliba expected to sign but then leave on loan again, Arsenal manager Unai Emery is still prioritising the signing of another centre back to improve his defence.

Read more: Arsenal appoints Edu as technical director