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Sokratis targeted by Roma as Chris Smalling alternative?

Sokratis targeted by Roma as Smalling alternative?
© Reuters
Arsenal defender Sokratis Papastathopoulos is reportedly a target for Italian outfit Roma, following the departure of Chris Smalling.

Italian outfit Roma have reportedly targeted Arsenal defender Sokratis Papastathopoulos following the departure of Chris Smalling.

Smalling has returned to his parent club Manchester United following a successful loan spell with Roma during the 2019-20 campaign.

Corriere dello Sport reports that Roma are unwilling to pay the £18.1m demanded by Manchester United and, with former Tottenham Hotspur defender Jan Vertonghen signing for Benfica, the Italian club have turned their attention to Sokratis.

The Greek international has fallen down the pecking order under manager Mikel Arteta and failed to make a single Premier League appearance for the Gunners since the restart.

The 32-year-old, who has one year left on his contract, is seeking assurances over his game time and will look to move away from North London if he is not part of Arteta's future plans.

Sokratis has previously played in Serie A for AC Milan and Genoa and the idea of a return to Italy is thought to be an appealing one for the defender.

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