Reading In Talks To Sign Premier League Youngster

Reading are in talks to sign Arsenal youngster Zane Monlouis on loan, according to Sami Mokbel of The Daily Mail.

The 20-year-old centre-back from Arsenal’s academy is a prime target for the League One outfit as they look to strengthen their defence before the deadline tonight in the hopes of fending off relegation this term.

Talks are now underway between the teams for a loan until the end of the season for the defender who recently captained Arsenal’s U21s against Reading in the EFL Trophy in a 5-2 defeat back in November.

Monlouis has made 81 appearances for the Gunners at the U18 and U21 levels in the Premier League. The North London side are currently fourth in that division, having conceded the second-fewest goals up until this point.

The London-born defender revealed in May of last year that he was eager to go on loan in the upcoming season to gain some experience. If the loan to Reading goes through before the deadline, it will be his first taste of senior football.

“For me personally, I’d like to get a loan.

“Come in for pre-season, just graft, even if I don’t get a loan, just continue grafting in the U21s, try to put in as good performances as I possibly can.

“But for me personally I want to try and get a loan as I feel like that’s where my next step is.”

Arsenal tied the player down to his first professional contract back in 2020 and it does not expire until June of 2025. There are no current indications of a buy option in the deal, with the player expected to return to his parent club at the end of the campaign.

The Royals currently sit 21st in League One, three points behind Port Vale who have two games in hand. The club have already been deducted four points so far this season and face a real battle to stay up. If a deal is successful, Monlouis could be in the squad for their next game against Oxford United on Saturday.

Writer’s View

Monlouis is a really good defender with real quality on the ball. His ability to carry the ball out from the back at pace and beat the opposition press has been a major asset for the Gunners at youth level, and the fact that he’s the captain of the side highlights just how highly rated he is behind the scenes at the club.

He has all the hallmark attributes of a modern centre-back and he could be the type of player Reading need to sure up the defence in the second half of the season as they look to ensure their spot in the third tier for at least another year.

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