Celtic

By Derek Smithson

Charlie Nicholas believes Arsenal should sign either Raphael Varane or Virgil van Dijk in the summer transfer window.

The Gunners recently announced that manager Arsene Wenger has been handed a two-year extension at the Emirates Stadium.

He will be under pressure to strengthen his side after missing out on the Champions League group stages and the defence may be an area to focus on.

Arsenal currently have centre-backs Shkodran Mustafi, Laurent Koscielyn, Gabriel, Per Mertesacker and Rob Holding at their disposal, while Calum Chambers is set to return from a loan at Middlesbrough.

Sky Sports pundit Nicholas feels that the north London club need to add a top defender in the summer and has highlighted either Real Madrid’s Varane or Southampton’s Van Dijk.

“Raphael Varane or Virgil van Dijk would be ideal at centre-back,” Nicholas told Sky Sports.

Varane has emerged as a highly rated centre-back in European football during recent seasons and become an important player for Madrid.

The 24-year-old France international has made 38 appearances across all competitions this season and will hope to be involved in the Champions League final against Juventus.

Meanwhile, Southampton ace Van Dijk has fast become renowned as one of the best centre-backs in the Premier League.

The Holland international is extremely comfortable in possession and a physically imposing defender.

The 25-year-old could provide competition for places at Arsenal and Wenger’s decision to experiment with a three-man defence last season means they may need some extra centre-back options.

In other Arsenal transfer news, a Sky Sports pundit has revealed whether he thinks Alexis Sanchez will remain at the club.

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