Arsenal have registered an interest in Ajax centre-back, Jorrel Hato, according to a report from The Athletic.
In what has been a below-par season for Ajax, teenage defender, Hato has emerged as one of the bright sparks for Ajax this season, as they battle their way back to the top four after a disastrous start to the season. His performances for Die Godenzonen has earned him a call-up to the Netherland national team at just 17, becoming the fifth youngest debutant for The Oranje.
Hato possesses similar versatility with summer signing, Timber where both can slot in seamlessly at centre-back and left-back. Also, Arsenal and Ajax share a similar game model which is why Timber quickly adapted to Mikel Arteta’s style of play upon his arrival.
Although Hato will likely fetch a high transfer fee, The Athletic reports that Arsenal may decide on bringing in a more experienced player. Hence, a loan option for Hato is the most viable option.
Hato has a contract that keeps him at the Johan Cruyff Arena until June 2025 and is currently valued at £19m by transfermarkt.
Jorrel Hato is making a name for himself at Ajax after being promoted to the first team last season. Despite his young age, Hato has become a regular in the current season, showcasing his talent and potential on the field including captaining his side on several occasions this season.
Having made 16 appearances, Hato has displayed a commendable defensive prowess, blocking a total of 18 shots. Notably, these blocks have occurred mostly within the penalty box, showcasing the young Dutch international’s fearlessness and commitment to putting his body on the line for the team.
Following injuries to Jurrien Timber and Takehiro Tomiyasu, the Gunners are a little light on defensive options and Mikel Arteta is keen on bolstering his defensive ranks. With pace, strength, proficiency in ball carrying, and combativeness, Hato is the archetypical player that suits Arsenal’s defensive line, and his addition will provide the Gunners depth and competition for places.
It remains to be seen if Arsenal will either initiate a permanent move for the 17-year-old, make a loan offer, or wait till summer to buy a more experienced defender.
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