Report: Mikel Arteta adds 6ft 5in academy ace to Arsenal squad for Brighton clash

Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta has reportedly added Gunners academy defender Zech Medley to his squad ahead of Saturday’s Premier League trip to Brighton, according to Football London.

The North Londoners’ return to top-flight action after a three-month hiatus promised so much but ultimately delivered very little as Manchester City ran out 3-0 winners on Wednesday.

However, a fairly quick turnaround sees Arsenal back in action on Saturday afternoon with a less tricky proposition on paper in the shape of relegation-battling Brighton.

That said, Arteta not only has to contend with rallying his troops in search of an immediate response to the midweek horror show, but he has to do so with a severely depleted defence.

Calum Chambers and Pablo Mari are out for the season, David Luiz is suspended and Sokratis Papastathopoulos is still around two weeks away from being back in full training.

This leaves Shkodran Mustafi as the only regular senior centre-back at Arteta’s disposal, along with Rob Holding, who has not featured since January.

In wake of mounting absences in defence, Football London claims that Medley will be travelling to the south coast for the match as part of Arteta’s squad.

The 19-year-old centre-back has made three appearances for Arsenal but is yet to feature in a game this season, though he was in the squad for the 2-2 draw away to Standard Liege in the Europa League.

Medley’s last senior Gunners appearance came in the 2018-19 FA Cup third round, when he played seven minutes against Blackpool, while prior to that, he had featured in Europa League games against Vorskla Poltava and Qarabag.

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