Highly rated Arsenal defender set for Championship switch
Arsenal’s 21-year-old defender Daniel Ballard is set to finalize a loan deal at Millwall, according to FootballInsider.
The Northern Ireland international hugely impressed at Blackpool in the English third division last year. He was an instrumental part of the team that went on to get promoted to the Championship.
His development will now continue at a better league and in a better team, who finished 11th in England’s second tier league.
The Lions were not the only ones who were fighting for Ballard’s signature. Some of the top half teams from Championship as well as Blackpool showed great interest. But it now looks like the 21-year-old will be plying his trade at The Den next campaign.
Daniel Ballard edging towards a move to Millwall for the season. Not signed yet and medical still to be completed, but it’s heading in that direction. Several Championship clubs, including Blackpool again, had been trying to sign him. pic.twitter.com/aCb1VrMefK
— Charles Watts (@charles_watts) June 26, 2021
Ballard made an impressive 30 appearances for Blackpool last season, racking up a whopping 2,636 minutes. He has even gone on to making an impressive eight appearances for his national team, Northern Ireland, in less than a year.
The report further suggested that Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta has already given the green light to the loan deal for Ballard. Many inside the club still believe he has a massive future at the Emirates Stadium.
Thus, a permanent sale was out of question. Millwall acted fast and now appear to have won the race for the highly regarded 21-year-old on a season-long loan.
Hearing that Arsenal's Daniel Ballard is the Premier League centre-back that #Millwall are trying to sign. Makes sense, as coming off an impressive loan at Blackpool last season. pic.twitter.com/HhpZwB8KXd
— Richard Cawley (@RichCawleySLP) June 25, 2021
Although Ballard only has only two years left on his current deal at North London, that is expected to change, with fresh terms likely to be handed out in the near future or next summer.
Getting into Arsenal’s first team at the moment is difficult for any youngster, let alone a young center-back. The Gunners are well stocked in that part of the pitch. The competition for places is expected to rise even further with the expected arrival of Ben White from Brighton and William Saliba.
After Ballard, more departures are expected at the Emirates, be it loan or permanent sales, as Arsenal look to trim the squad and raise funds to strengthen other parts of the squad.
Thus, it is safe to say that our Technical Director Edu and newly appointed Director of Football Richard Garlick have massive job on their hands this summer.