Sokratis’ Arsenal exit ‘almost done’ as Napoli fend off late transfer interest

Arsenal outcast Sokratis Papastathopoulos is nearing a Gunners exit, as soon as Napoli receive an acceptable bid for Kalidou Koulibaly.

The Italian side have fended off potential suitors in recent seasons but are ready to offload their star defender this summer.

Manchester United, Manchester City and Liverpool have previously been keen on Kouliably's signature – but no bids have been launched.

Napoli have been working on a deal for Sokratis in the meantime, fending off interest from Ligue 1 side Nice.

And a deal is reportedly ready to be signed off if Koulibaly ends up leaving Naples in the near future, according to Rai Sport journalist Ciro Venerato.

“Satisfactory offers have not arrived for [Koulibaly]," he said.

"The club have locked Sokratis, but Nice also requested him. We will see what happens in the next few days.

"If Napoli sell Kalidou Koulibaly on October 4th, they can send a certified e-mail the morning of the 5th to Arsenal since everything is already done for the purchase of the Greek."

Mikel Arteta is expecting a busy end to the transfer window.

And the Spaniard knows some players will have to leave to balance the books.

"We are trying all the time to adjust the squad in the most efficient way.

“It is clear at the moment that it has to go both ways and in order to achieve that we still have some time but we are pretty clear in what we are trying to do.

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“Again, with all the players that we have here, we're going to try to get the best out of them.

“We're going to try to improve them as much as we possibly can and create the right environment for them so that they are happy at the club, because I believe it's the most important thing for them to perform to the level that we want.

“After that, obviously in the market there are things that we cannot control. There are things that we can control and let's try to manage in the best possible way."

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