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Mathieu Debuchy could become Arsenal's next departure with Ligue 1 club St Etienne said to be keen to sign the defender.

The 32-year-old defender has made just 15 appearances for the Gunners' first-team in the last three seasons owing to injury and the emergence of Hector Bellerin as Arsene Wenger's first choice right-back.

Debuchy has tried to engineer a move away from the Emirates Stadium during the previous transfer windows but has failed to reach an agreement with interested clubs. He is again keen to find a solution which will guarantee him regular playing time.

According to French publication L'Equipe, Debuchy is closing in on a move to St Etienne in the hope of playing regularly and getting back into the thoughts of France national team manager Didier Deschamps ahead of the World Cup in Russia this summer.

The report claims that Arsenal are willing to allow the former Newcastle United defender to leave the club on a free transfer despite there being 18 months left on his £60,000-a-week deal with the club. The Gunners are keen to reduce their wage bill in the light of the arrival of Henrikh Mkhitaryan and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, while they are also ready to break their wage structure and make Mesut Ozil the highest earner at the club.

Debuchy has been used on the right side of a three-man defence by Wenger this season and also as a wing-back in Europa League games, but with Calum Chambers and Rob Holding on their books, he has been deemed dispensable by the club.

The Frenchman will become Arsenal's fourth first-team departure following the exits of Alexis Sanchez, Theo Walcott and Francis Coquelin to Manchester United, Everton and Valencia respectively. However he could be beaten to the exit doors by compatriot Oivier Giroud, who is also said to have agreed terms with Chelsea over a January move for a fee of around £18m.

Apart from the exit, Arsenal have confirmed two signings in Mkhitaryan and Konstantinos Mavropanos, while Aubameyang is close to being announced their third signing of the winter transfer window.

Mathieu Debuchy
Mathieu Debuchy is close to leaving Arsenal with St Etienne being touted as his next destination Getty