Arsenal set to seal £42m transfer tipped to be 'perfect fit' at Man City

Riccardo Calafiori
-Credit: (Image: 2024 Getty Images)

Arsenal are hoping to seal the signing of Riccardo Calafiori for £42million from Bologna this week in what will be a huge transfer coup for the Gunners.

The Italy international, who can play as a centre-half or a left-back, is believed to have agreed personal terms and the move will see Bologna make a £39million profit on a defender they paid £3million to sign from Basel - albeit the Swiss side will be owed 50% of the transfer fee.

Calafiori's rise has been rapid this season, having struggled initially at Roma and Genoa in Serie A, and his performances saw Bologna qualify for this season's UEFA Champions League.

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The 22-year-old has even been compared to AC Milan legend Paolo Maldini and Mikel Arteta believes he is capable of being used as an inverted full-back, as well as providing competition to central defenders William Saliba and Gabriel Magalhaes.

There was a thought in Italy that Calafiori would have been the perfect fit at Man City under Pep Guardiola and that will make his arrival at the Emirates Stadium all the more sweeter.

Certainly, former Juventus, Middlesbrough and Italy forward Fabrizio Ravanelli is a member of that school of thought and even suggested Calafiori would be the natural successor to City defender John Stones.

“I really like Calafiori, and signing him would be a great move. If Calafiori were playing for Manchester City, he would be the new Stones," Ravanelli told TuttoSport.

"He’s a perfect fit for Guardiola’s style because he can play various defensive roles. Calafiori excels at starting attacks, as well as in marking and passing. Moreover, he seems to have a strong personality. In short, he would be an excellent addition to the team.”

The move for Calafiori could accelerate Arsenal's transfer window with more signings expected and departures anticipated in the defence after his arrival.