Mikel Arteta has Arsenal star ‘tailor-made’ for him despite transfer interest in two stars
Arsenal boss Mikel Arteta has a winger ‘tailor-made’ for his style of play already in his squad - despite the fact he is pursuing two wide-men in the summer transfer window. Per TEAMtalk, Arsenal are confident of agreeing a deal for Bournemouth’s Ryan Fraser, who is out of contract this summer.
The north London are also said to be readying a two-year contract offer for Chelsea forward Willian, who recently declared an extension with the Blues is “difficult” and “unlikely”.
But although Fraser and Willian could join Arsenal, former Gunners forward Adrian Clarke believes academy graduate Reiss Nelson is already custom-built for Arteta’s style of play.
The 20-year-old impressed on loan at Hoffenheim in the Bundesliga last term and has featured regularly under Arteta.
Nelson has made 16 first-team appearances this term, producing two goals and three assists. He stood out in the FA Cup win over Portsmouth prior to the season’s coronavirus-enforced suspension.
And Clarke believes Nelson is ideal for the Spanish coach, with it hoped the London-born attacker can go on to enjoy a big future for the Gunners.
“When he's been fit to play, the head coach has also been keen to use Reiss Nelson too,” Clarke told Arsenal Player in a breakdown of Arteta’s impact so far.
“After scoring against Leeds in the FA Cup, he conjured up a pair of fantastic assists at Portsmouth.
“The pace and width he supplies down the right seems tailor-made for Arteta's style.
“Before this enforced break it was bold for the man in charge to select Eddie Nketiah over Alexandre Lacazette.
“Using youngsters is something he's more than prepared to do.”
Despite Nelson’s progress, the Arsenal manager is clearly keen to bolster his options in the final third.
Fraser and Willian are both natural wingers but can also play in the No 10 role, where Arteta is light on back-up behind Mesut Ozil.
Arteta has generally tended to play Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and Nicolas Pepe out wide, while Gabriel Martinelli and Nelson have also been deployed there.
But Aubameyang could leave the Emirates this summer, with his contract expiring in little over a year.
Arsenal want to tie their top goalscorer down to a new deal but the 30-year-old striker has attracted interest from the likes of Barcelona, Real Madrid and Inter Milan.
Speaking about Aubameyang’s future a month ago, Arteta said: “For me it is very easy. I want to keep him under any circumstances.
"We will see the intentions that we have and his intentions.
"Where we are sitting in the table at that moment. I think it is difficult to predict that context right now."
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