Arsenal have already sent Ainsley Maitland-Niles and Folarin Balogun out on loan this January and it now looks like we are close to sending yet another peripheral defender out on loan very shortly.
This time it is set to be our big Spanish centre-back Pablo Mari, who is reported to be a target for Serie A side Udinese, according to the transfer guru Fabrizio Romano. There is little surprise that we are getting the ex-Flamengo man off our books as he has only made 12 appearances in his whole two years at the Emirates.
This is what Romano tweeted last night…..
Pablo Marí deal. Udinese director Marino: “We’re gonna sign another centre back soon, this is our plan – I can confirm we’re in talks to sign a new defender”, he told Sky. ⚪️🇪🇸 #AFC
— Fabrizio Romano (@FabrizioRomano) January 15, 2022
To be fair, I had high hopes for Mari when he arrived as Mikel Arteta’s first signing on loan from Flamengo, as our defence was in a bit of a shambles at the time. Edu said at the time: “Pablo is an experienced player who will provide us with additional defensive quality. We have been monitoring Pablo’s career for a while and we are very pleased to have reached agreement with Flamengo for him to join us initially until the end of our season.”
In that season though, Mari only played two games before the League suspension came into force when Covid arrived, and then when it was resumed, he was injured in his first game back, and has spent most of his time at Arsenal in the treatment room.
I think that a move to Udinese is a good idea for him to get his career back on track. He is still only 28 so could have a good few more years ahead of him if he can stay clear of injuries…