Arsenal are getting audacious with links to Kai Havertz and Houssem Aouar, but if those two don’t work out, here are three alternatives.
I’ve spent a lot of time discussing the plausibility and excitement of Arsenal landing Kai Havertz or Houssem Aouar. As the young darlings of the footballing world, they are always going to be the headline grabbers. But assuming we can’t get either of these two hotshots, there are plenty of alternatives to accomplishing the exact same thing.
What the Gunners need is someone who can create and finish goals. That’s the goal here. Havertz is the gold standard, Aouar is up there too, but it’s silly to think we have to dump crazy sums of money to address this situation. Even if I still believe Havertz to be very realistic option.
It’s a rarity to have such a lapse in creating chances and creating goals in the midfield like the Gunners do, so let’s talk about three other options that can create what we need to be created without the crazy price tag.
As a courtesy, I have not included Marcel Sabitzer, but know that he is my actual No. 1 in every such list.
We start with No. 3.
3. Maximilian Arnold
Max Arnold doesn’t get enough attention. Part of the reason why is that he’s been at Wolfsburg so long, most people probably just assume he’ll be there for life. He moved there in 2010 and he’s been there ever since. All the while his transfer value has always hovered in the £12-17m range. Which betrays the fact that he is, in fact, a tremendous midfielder.
Arnold is a tried and true pivot, he knows how to defend, he knows how to win the ball back, take it, turn around and go forward. He knows how to dribble through lines and how to score goals. He’s got 28 goals and 25 assists during his stay at Wolfsburg, never amounting to less than a handful of goals. Lately though, as his prime approaches, he is looking more like a double-digit goals a year kind of guy.
Arnold only has two years left on his contract and it’s decision time. If there is a chance to land Arnold for as cheap as his market value insinuates, then he’s a bargain and a half, and a solution too.