David Ornstein believes that Arsenal is the “most probable destination” for Lisandro Martinez.
The Athletic journalist provided an update on the Martinez to Arsenal transfer saga on HaytersTV.
Last week, The Athletic reported that Ajax rejected a bid of around €30m (£26m) from the Gunners for Martinez.
Arsenal aren’t the only club reportedly eyeing the Argentine, with Manchester United also in the race.
Metro have also reported that Ajax have set a €50m (£43m) asking price for Martinez.
“In the mind of Arsenal”
But despite Arsenal failing with their first bid, Ornstein believes the Gunners remain keen on the 24-year-old.
He also suggested that United may have concerns over Martinez’s height, as they plan to use him at left centre-back.
“Lisandro Martinez is a firm target for Arsenal for the left centre-back role and he can also operate at left-back in the mind of Arsenal,” Ornstein told HaytersTV.
“He’s a player that Mikel Arteta wants to sign. Arsenal have had an approach worth around €30m rejected by Ajax, that interest will not drop.
“The question is who else is interested in him?
“Of course, he’s played for Erik ten Hag in the past, and there are reports Ten Hag would like to bring him to United now.
“The problem is that Manchester United are focusing on Frenkie de Jong and Christian Eriksen.
“There may also be concerns if Lisandro Martinez is tall enough for the left centre-back role because I don’t know of Manchester United looking to do what Arsenal would like, which is to use him at left-back as well.
“As things stand, I think Arsenal is the most probable destination for Lisandro Martinez, who is said to be keen on a move.
“But this could have twists and turns with a number of clubs admiring such a good player.”
“Very commanding and calm in possession”
Martinez would be a superb signing for Arsenal, an incredibly talented and versatile defender with a high ceiling.
In April this year, scouting website Breaking the Lines provided an in-depth analysis of the player.
“The 24-year-old is very commanding and calm in possession,” they wrote.
“So much so that he is allowed to abandon his role at centre-back to sometimes act as deep-lying midfielder beyond the first line of pressure.
“This is because the Argentine is very comfortable playing in tight areas, always backing himself to get out of situations.
“His ability on the ball is more that of a midfielder, his switch of play is the most striking part of his ball-playing.
“His diagonal switches have incredible accuracy and can be key in disrupting a low block.
“This pattern of play was lethal with Hakim Ziyech in 2019/2020 and still is with Anthony or Steven Berghuis.
“In terms of defending… he leans on his intelligence and spatial awareness to thwart forwards.
“He can step up to dispossess, or back off to defend the space – it all depends on the situation.
“Martinez is an extremely intelligent and cultured defender.”