Loic Perrin
Loic Perrin has had a personal approach from Arsenal Getty Images

Arsenal have made a personal approach to Saint-Etienne defender Loic Perrin but are yet to firm up their interest in the 29-year-old centre-back, the player has confirmed.

Gunners manager Arsene Wenger has made adding to his back four his priority in the January transfer window, with just six senior defenders available to the French boss this season amid an injury crisis in north London.

Kieran Gibbs, Mathieu Debuchy, Laurent Koscielny, Calum Chambers and Nacho Monreal have all suffered spells out of the Arsenal first team due to either injury or suspension, while Per Mertesacker missed the start of the campaign following Germany's World Cup win.

Such defensive issues have led to an uncertain start to the campaign for Arsenal, with five defeats in their opening 20 league matches seeing them three points off the pace in the race for the top four and a full 13 pointd adrift of co-leaders Chelsea and Manchester City.

That will lead to Wenger scouring the window in the hope of beefing up his back four and has seen the club make an approach to Perrin, however the club are yet to substantiate their interest with a bid for the player.

"I was contacted personally. Arsenal are interested," the player told Le Progres. "But for now, there is still no contact with Saint-Etienne."

Wenger has a reputation for being frugal in the transfer market but can ill-afford to be ponderous in the window if Arsenal have any ambitions of qualifying for the Champions League.

A host of players returning from injury, including Aaron Ramsey and Theo Walcott, means Wenger may not make a deluge of additions but he promises to make signings when the time is right.

"I've said that many times, without any doubt, if we find the right player we will do a deal," he said.

"There's a huge difference between the perceptions that people have of me: I'm not scared to spend money.

"Those periods we did not spend we did not have the money. What I don't like is to spend money we haven't got.

"What I fought against is to spend money that would put the future of the club in danger. Now I have money, no problem at all."