Pablo Mari of Arsenal is close to negotiating a loan move to Udinese, where he will join Filip Benkovic, who recently left Leicester City.
The Spaniard started the Gunners’ opening two Premier League games this season, both 2-0 losses to Brentford and Chelsea, before making his last appearance in September in a 3-0 Carabao Cup triumph against Wimbledon.
Mari’s last appearance for the club was in that game, and he has since fallen out of favor, falling behind Ben White and Gabriel Magalhaes in the pecking order.
However, with Arsenal not competing in any European competitions this season, cup appearances have been scarce, and he missed the Carabao Cup fourth-round win over Leeds due to illness, before being ruled out of the quarter-final win over Sunderland owing to a positive Covid test.
The 28-year-old looks likely to leave Arsenal in search of regular first-team action, which he has struggled to find since signing permanently in the summer of 2020 after a brief loan spell.
Mikel Arteta’s first signing as Arsenal manager was Mari, and the arrangement stipulated that the north London club would pay Flamengo £865,000 for every 10 Premier League appearances he made, up to a maximum of 80 appearances.
Mari will meet up with Benkovic, who is also on his way to the Italian club after leaving Leicester following an agreement to cancel the remainder of his contract.