Arsenal legend Sol Campbell says Ben White ‘has to start’ because of his huge price tag.

The England centre-back is closing in on a move to Arsenal after undergoing a medical at the weekend.

The Gunners have agreed on a £50million fee with Brighton after seeing two bids knocked back for the 23-year-old.

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White looks set to bolster Mikel Arteta’s options in defence ahead of the new campaign.

He will compete with Gabriel Magalhaes, Rob Holding and Pablo Mari for a place in the starting eleven.

Speaking about the signing, Campbell told talkSPORT: “It needs to work out because Arsenal are not in the position to shift out £50m for a player. He’ll definitely have to start.

“If it does happen and the medical is all good, he’ll have to hit the ground running. It’s a difficult one, it’s a lot of money.

“They’re looking at the years ahead and they see a future. He can play in midfield or as a full-back. At £50m, you’ve got to be the master of your position.”

Campbell, who also played for London rivals Tottenham, believes Arsenal need to build on the transfer with another statement signing.

He gave Manchester United-bound Raphael Varane as an example.

“For me hopefully it does work out, but if you want that instant success and you want to build a team, you bring in Ben White, but you also bring in someone like Raphael Varane – you bring both of them in!”

United have agreed a deal with Real Madrid for Varane. They will pay around €50m for his signature, while personal terms have already been settled.

Arsenal, meanwhile, are looking at Chelsea’s Tammy Abraham as a potential option to improve their attack.

The goalscorer is on the verge of leaving Stamford Bridge in search of game time.

Last season, he achieved 12 goals in all competitions but wasn’t even named in the squad for the Blues’ Champions League triumph over Manchester City.

Abraham’s situation has also alerted the attention of Aston Villa, where he spent a season on loan in 2018/19.

He’s valued at around £40m by Chelsea.


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