Arsenal defender Sokratis Papastathopoulos is currently locked in negotiations with Greek club Olympiakos as he moves an inch closer to an exit from the Emirates Stadium, according to various reports. The defender has been deemed surplus to requirements by manager Mikel Arteta and will reportedly have to make way this January and lose his Gunners career.
Sokratis is not a bona-fide member of the Arsenal team this season after getting axed from the system due to a surplus in the number of foreigners in the squad. Both the player and the club have an agreement in place that the final six months of his contract at the London club will have to be terminated, hence, he will be granted the opportunity to leave the club as a free agent and Arsenal will have to forget about his £92,000 per week wages.
While Italian Serie A club Genoa and Turkish giants Fenerbahçe were the two clubs strongly linked with landing his signature, fresh reports have now emerged that he is very close to returning to his homeland by sealing a switch to Greek club Olympiakos.
With Fenerbahçe ruling out a move for the defender, Lazio coach on the other hand, in the person of Simone Inzaghi told Italian media outlet Rai that a move for the Greek defender was hugely contemplated as he confirmed his side’s interest in Sokratis.
Inzaghi said Lazio were in the running for the player’s signature but that the transfer window is a complex one given that the players who are constantly playing football find it really difficult to leave their clubs for new ones. He also added that Sokratis fit into the profile of player they are looking for as a defender, but it looks as though the Italian club have pulled the plug on any deal that would see Sokratis don the Lazio shirt.