Arsenal have leaked a staggering 31 goals in the Premier League this season which eventually cloud the good work that they have been doing in the other half of the pitch.

And even Unai Emery has admitted to his team’s defensive frailties after Arsenal’s win over Fulham.

“Our challenge now is to improve defensively. The reason may be different things. We have not had every player, because of different injuries,” Emery said.

“Today is the first time we could play with [Laurent] Koscielny, [Shkodran] Mustafi and Sokratis [Papastathopoulos]. Defensively we must find more balance and improve.

“It is one of the things we need to work on, to prepare for the second half of the season. We need to do better in the second half of the season, work on every player, every team, tactically.”

And this shaky defence suffered yet another setback last month when Rob Holding was ruled out for the rest of the season with an ACL injury.

Holding has undergone surgery and the player is expected to be out for six to nine months meaning Unai Emery has no other option but to bring in a new centre-back this month.

And if reports are to be believed then Emery has shortlisted Torino centre-back Nicolas N’Koulou as the ideal replacement.

N’Koulou has been in top form the Italian outfit this season having already made 19 appearances for them in the Serie A.

And the fact that the Cameroon international can play on either side of central defence as well in central midfield makes him a perfect choice for the Gunners.

But the biggest problem for Arsenal and Unai Emery will be to lure him out of the club since Torino is keen to hold onto him – atleast until the end of the season.

N’Koulou’s current contract with Torino runs out in 2020 meaning the club are in no haste to offload him just yet as they clearly feel that they will be able to squeeze out more money from the centre-back’s sale once the season comes to an end.

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