Jorrel Hato to Arsenal transfer latest - scouting trip, new contract, Jurrien Timber effect

Jorrel Hato of Ajax
Jorrel Hato of Ajax -Credit:ANP via Getty Images

Arsenal have been linked with young Ajax defender Jorrel Hato for a number of months with the 18-year-old looking like the next best defensive talent to emerge from the club’s historic academy.

The centre-back has played 45 times this season during a campaign that has seen the Amsterdam outfit sink into the relegation zone before bouncing back up into the top six. Hato has been an ever-present throughout and played all but eight minutes of Ajax’s 32 league games.

He has earned his first six caps for the Netherlands Under-21s this season and is tipped to break into the senior squad at some stage, albeit likely not in time for this summer’s Euros. Arsenal are well set on centre-backs with William Saliba and Gabriel forming a phenomenal partnership.

Ben White and Jurrien Timber - who transferred from Ajax last summer - can also play there, as does Jakub Kiwior. Mikel Arteta may be keen to further future-proof his side and Hato would be a real coup. However, a deal this summer looks unlikely. Find out why below.

What we know about Arsenal and Hato

The Gunners do have a strong interest in the defender, but Ajax getting the player to sign a four-year renewal in March will have sent a message to those at the Emirates Stadium. It’s understood that no release clause has been inserted into his deal. revealed in January that Arteta is such a big fan of Hato that he is willing to offload Kiwior to finance a move for him. This still may happen, although probably not this summer.

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Hato himself has not been shy about his future Premier League ambitions, though. Speaking about Timber’s move to Arsenal earlier this season, he told ELF Voetbal: “In any case, the move to Arsenal was a wonderful one for him. It is also my dream to one day make such a transfer, but I realise that I still have a very long way to go.”

Former Liverpool captain Jordan Henderson, who moved from Saudi to Ajax in January, has delivered high praise for Hato. He said: “It's crazy how young he is, but obviously how mature he looks when he's on the pitch and also off the pitch… He's a very mature person, works hard, fantastic player. And yeah, he has a bright future ahead of him, I'm sure.”

Journalist Fabrizio Romano says Arsenal remain interested despite Hato’s new deal and continue to scout him, having made several viewings already.