Arsenal Handed January Blow over French Defender

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By Nick Howson | October 1, 2012 1:11 AM EST

Arsenal's hopes of making a renewed bid for Montpellier defender Mapou Yanga-Mbiwa have been scuppered by news the French club have no intention of selling the 23 year old in the January transfer window.

The France international was close to joining AC Milan in the summer, but the move fell through with the two teams unable to agree a fee.

Yanga-Mbiwa had also revealed that Arsenal had enquired about his services, and any hopes the Premier League side had of renewing their efforts to sign him might have been dashed.

"Is there any possibility that Yanga-Mbiwa will leave in January? Absolutely not," Nicollin told calciomercato.com.

"We're working on extending Yanga-Mbiwa's contract. In any case, the only thing that's certain at the moment is that Yanga-Mbiwa won't leave in January.

"Are Juventus and Barcelona are also interested in Yanga-Mbiwa? To be honest, nobody has asked us about him. I don't know if any clubs have been in contact with Yanga-Mbiwa's agent, and I honestly don't care."

The Gunners were able to bring in Santi Cazorla, Lukas Podolski and Olivier Giroud this summer, but failed to add to a defence, which has often been injury prone.

Alex Song, who can also be used in defence, left in the summer, along with Robin Van Persie, but Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger has opted to stay put, with the likes of Ignasi Miguel in reserve, alongside Johan Djourou.

Yanga-Mbiwa said earlier this season: "Milan wanted me, but even though my president was ready to sell me, the deal didn't go through in the end.

"I was really disappointed about not joining Milan, but our president is the owner of the club and he must be respected.

"Milan made an offer but it was rejected. It was then I understood that it would be difficult for me to leave Montpellier.

"Arsenal also tried to sign me, but I had my attention elsewhere."

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