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Arsenal interested in signing French defender

Arsenal have reportedly joined the growing list of elite European clubs keenly monitoring the progress of RB Leipzig defender Ibrahima Konate.

The 21-year-old Frenchman has been earning rave reviews in the Bundesliga after bursting onto the scene alongside Dayot Upamecano in the back line.

And now Arsenal are ready to throw their name into the ring and emerge as suitors for Konate, according to German publication Sport Bild.

The Gunners face still competition, with many top sides understood to be watching Konate in preparation for a bid.

Bild claim that ‘many sides from England’ have made links with the player, giving heavy suggestion that the next step in Konate’s career will unfold in the Premier League.

It is added, however, that Leipzig are unwilling to sell their starlet meaning any seriously interested parties will be forced to meet Konate’s release clause.

The Frenchman has a €50million (£45m) buy-out inserted into his Leipzig contract, making him a potential big-money signing in the upcoming January window.

Arsenal already spent big on defender Gabriel Magalhaes during the most recent summer window, while they also have exciting youngster William Saliba on their books, currently developing in the youth ranks following a loan spell back at Saint Etienne.

Leipzig are expected to put up resistance when it comes to selling defenders this year, with Upamecano also attracting the interest of both Real Madrid and Manchester United.

The 22-year-old is widely expected to depart at the end of the season, and like Konate has a £45m release clause written into his contract.

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