The return of the Bundesliga yielded some impressive performances and results around Germany this weekend, and resurrected the hopes of football fans worldwide. Here are five players who Arsenal should consider signing, should their form hold.
The Bundesliga is back, and as the first major league to return, it’s attracting the attention of fans and clubs alike. Transfer rumors are rife, connecting clubs like Arsenal to everyone from Brandt to Boateng, Havertz to Hakimi, Sancho to Sabitzer. But here are five Bundesliga players who might have flown under your radar this weekend, but who are perfect for Mikel Arteta’s outfit.
5. Stefan Lainer
The Swiss right-back has been plying his trade at Borussia Monchengladbach since 2019, having played his way up through the Austrian football league, starting his career in the RB Salzburg academy. He’s industrious and strong, skilled on and off the ball, and blisteringly quick off the mark. And those abilities alone would make him a prime target.
But what truly sets Lainer apart is his work-rate and stamina. Eintracht Frankfurt found very little joy down their left flank, because Lainer hounded them up and down the touchline for all ninety minutes of the game, no mean feat after a two-month break. He has played through the last minute of 20 of the 23 Bundesliga games Gladbach has played this season, and through the end of every DFP Pokal and Europa League match so far.
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With the walking wounded Arsenal have fielded at right-back in recent years, the durable Swiss would be a welcome addition. Plus, he’ll come cheap, both in terms of transfer fees and wages.
However, I’ve ranked him fifth because of two major drawbacks. First, he’s 27, meaning he’s currently approaching the peak of his career, and we’d have at most five good years out of him before we would have to move him on. Not a trap I’d want to enter.
Second, Arsenal has a glut of right-backs at the moment, and assuming Cedric Soares stays, either on an extended loan or a permanent deal, he would be surplus to requirements. Just because he’s perfect doesn’t mean we need to have him. If we sell Hector Bellerin this summer to raise funds, or Cedric leaves, I say sign him up. We all know how hard good fullbacks are to come by.
At number 4 is one for the future.