Crystal Palace ‘leading contenders’ to take £2m-rated Arsenal defender from Mikel Arteta

Jason Soutar
Arsenal defender Rob Holding is reportedly a transfer target for Crystal Palace.
Arsenal defender Rob Holding is reportedly a transfer target for Crystal Palace.

Crystal Palace are leading the race to sign Arsenal centre-back Rob Holding, according to reports.

Arsenal are reportedly willing to sell Holding this summer and Luton Town have been linked with the player this week.

Hatters boss Rob Edwards shut down those rumours on Thursday, insisting he is not interested in signing the English defender.

Holding has also attracted interest from Besiktas and the Gunners rejected a derisory £2.1million bid from the Turkish giants last month.

The 27-year-old has never been first choice under Mikel Arteta but came into his side for the latter stages of last term after William Saliba suffered a season-ending injury in March.

The absence of Saliba was worryingly noticeable with Holding clearly not on the same level as his French teammate.

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He made 24 appearances across all competitions in 2022/23 but has not been included in any of Arsenal’s three Premier League matchday squads this term.

As he is surplus to requirements, Crystal Palace have emerged as the frontrunners to sign Holding.

According to the Daily Mail, Roy Hodgson is eager to bolster his defence by signing the experienced centre-back.

It is noted that there has also been interest from Italy and Spain. The report says:

‘Crystal Palace are emerging as the leading contenders to land Arsenal defender Rob Holding before tonight’s transfer deadline.

‘Centre-back Holding has been among the players Arsenal have been open to offers for in this window.

‘He has been subject of interest from clubs in England, Italy and Spain this summer but the Selhurst Park club are increasingly hopeful of strengthening their defensive options by securing the 27 year-old.’

Holding has played over 150 times for Arsenal after joining the Premier League giants from Bolton Wanderers in 2016.

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