Arsenal to rival Chelsea for 6ft 5″ Championship defender

Stoke defender Nathan Collins is believed to be the subject of strong interest from both Chelsea and Arsenal currently.

Both Premier League clubs are believed to have had scouts keeping tabs on the 18 year-old centre-back with a view to a potential move this summer.

Collins has had limited playing time this season, picking up three starts as well as coming off the bench on six occasions, but is already being tipped for a move to a bigger club. The FAI have already included him in a provisional squad for their senior side, with him previously having played for their Under-17, Under-19 and Under-21 sides.

The youngster signed a new deal with Stoke last summer to tie him to his current club until 2024, which will give his club a strong stance when it comes to any such negotiations.

Arsenal have already agreed a deal which will see William Saliba join from St Etienne this summer, who is likely to command a first-team role for the coming campaign, while Collins could be the subject of a similar deal could arrangements be made.

If the soon-to-be 19 year-old was to be guaranteed more regular action at Stoke for next season, either Chelsea or Arsenal could include a clause which would allow Collins to stay with his current club for the current campaign to gain more regular action.

Would Collins be better off joining the Arsenal Under-23 squad or playing with Stoke as a squad player next term? Will Chelsea’s interest force us to increase our efforts?

Patrick

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