William Saliba Ben White Arsenal BrightonGetty/Goal

Saliba arrives for Marseille medical with Arsenal set to step up £50m White talks

Arsenal defender William Saliba has arrived in France ahead of his move to Marseille.

The Gunners have been in talks with the Ligue 1 side for weeks over a loan deal for the 21-year-old centre-back , who spent the second half of last season with Nice.

And an agreement has now been reached, with the defender having been given permission to travel to France to complete his switch to the Stade Velodrome.

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What’s the latest?

Saliba flew to France on Tuesday morning to undergo a medical and complete his move to Marseille.

Arsenal expect the transfer to be finalised in the next couple of days, with Saliba set to join Gunners team-mate Matteo Guendouzi on loan at the Stade Velodrome for the season .

Marseille had been keen to include an obligation to buy option in the loan deal for Saliba, but Arsenal refused the request during negotiations.

Does Saliba still have a future at Arsenal?

This will be Saliba’s third loan move since his £27 million ($37m) move to Arsenal in 2019, adding to spells with Saint-Etienne and Nice.

He has yet to make a single competitive appearance for the Gunners and will have just two years left on his contract when his stint with Marseille comes to an end next summer.

Arsenal insist the young defender does still have a future at the club, however, and say that his situation will be assessed again at the end of the 2021-22 campaign.

What's next for Arsenal?

Arsenal are now expected to press ahead with their pursuit of Ben White.

The Gunners have already seen multiple bids rejected by Brighton for the 23-year-old centre-back, who has been away with England at Euro 2020.

But talks between the two clubs have continued, with Arsenal confident of getting a deal done for the defender which will total around £50m ($70m) .

Saliba’s exit and an injury to Gabriel Magalhaes mean that Arsenal currently only have Rob Holding, Calum Chambers and Pablo Mari as available senior centre-backs.

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