After letting in 29 goals across our opening 13 games so far this season, it’s pretty clear that defensive reinforcements will be needed come January.
One area where we’re sorely lacking is at centre-back. Our current options are not only ageing and on the decline, but are devoid of any pace or athleticism needed at this level.
The loan market may not be glamorous, yet there’s one player who could be available until the end of the season who could tick a lot of boxes for Eddie Howe.
That man is Chelsea’s Malang Sarr; a player
The French centre-back has started just one league games all season – where he helped Chelsea beat Brentford 1-0 – but could offer the sort of speed, agility and ability on the ball that our defence is currently crying out for.
Chelsea seem unlikely to sell the 22-year-old, but with him in need of game time – preferably in the Premier League – and a player who knows Allan Saint-Maximin very well from their time together at Nice, this could be one to watch and a deal that suits all parties.
As a left-footer capable of playing on that side of a back three, he could also bring some balance to a defence that’s been crying out for some fresh blood, with Ciaran Clark struggling, Paul Dummett injured and Florian Lejeune sold.
Former Bournemouth favourite Nathan Ake could well be Howe’s top target in this area come January, however Sarr would be well worth looking at should Man City refuse to let the Dutchman go midway through the season.