ARSENAL

Aouar or Szoboszlai: Who Will Solve Creativity Issues at Arsenal?

Arsenal are not hiding their interest in signing Houssem Aouar or Dominik Szoboszlai but only one can arrive at Emirates next year.

The London giants sitting at 14th place in the Premier League with just 13 points. The Gunners have been firing blanks this season, scoring only 10 goals in 10 games. Certainly, this does not match with their attacking DNA imprinted by Arsene Wenger.

Recently manager Mikel Arteta left Mesut Ozil out of their 25 player Premier League squad. So this created a void in Arsenal’s midfield. They failed to create any sort of big chances for their attackers throughout the season.

Arteta currently plays with a 3-4-3 formation with 7 defensive-minded players. Central midfielders Granit Xhaka and Mohamed Elneny offer stability in the side but definitely takes the life out of their game. Dani Ceballos has a great passing range, but he fails to cover the 3-man defence properly. So most of Arsenal’s chances come from counter-attacks with balls played in behind the opposition backline.

Dom Szoboszlai and Houssem Aouar, Arsenal’s Top Priorities:

Arteta admitted 4-3-3 is his favourite formation. He intends to use it long term but lacks the strength and depth required to play it. The Spaniard made Lyon’s Houssem Aouar his top priority in the summer. The transfer would’ve enabled him to switch to 4-3-3 from 3-4-3.

Arsenal got Thomas Partey but he also is not known for his creativity. Now, since Arsenal are struggling at the bottom half of the table, they want to bolster their squad. Arsenal are now after Dominic Szoboszlai and Houssem Aouar to solve their problem in the middle of the park.

Dominik Szoboszlai is a 20-year-old Hungarian who plays for RB Salzburg. He scored 8 and assisted 9 more in 17 games for the Austrian outfit. He has 42 goals and 50 assists in 126 club career matches. This young player operates from left or central midfield. Certainly, with him on the pitch, Arsenal’s attacking prowess will spark.

The Guardian reporter Chris Godfrey has said on Twitter that Arsenal may turn towards a more experienced option in Inter’s Christian Eriksen who has Premier League pedigree. But suggested Arsenal will sign the young Hungarian.

Houssem Aouar is a French footballer playing for Olympique Lyonnais. The 22-year old is a creative central midfielder. He uses his passing, close control to break the opposition defence.

The ¢50 million rated player was close to joining the Gunners last summer till deadline day. He scored twice and had an assist in 8 games this season. But he is very instrumental in Lyon’s performance this season. They sit only two points behind league leaders PSG.

Our Take:

Arsenal are looking to offload some players to raise funds for signings, Mustafi, Sokratis being two of them. Lack of funds saw their pursuit of Aouar fail on deadline day. So Arteta is desperate to scoop up either of the two talented midfielders to secure a top-4 finish in the Premier League.

Now, Szoboszlai looks like a more affordable alternative as he’d cost around ¢25-30 million. A more direct player with a knack for goals, he will be a priceless signing for the Gunners. However, Arteta is a long admirer of Aouar. He would push for the Frenchman’s signing at all costs after missing out on him narrowly.

Now, Aouar wants to leave the Ligue 1 side. He refused to train with the squad after being left out of their game against Angers. So the hopes of a move to North London is rekindled. Also Arsenal legend Ian Wright wants Arteta to sign him.

With Ozil being out of the picture and Ceballos can not be paired with Xhaka or Elneny, the signing of a world-class creative playmaker is very crucial at this point.

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