Why Dayot Upamecano would be a smart signing for Arsenal
According to a report from the Metro, Arsenal have received a boost in their pursuit of Dayot Upamecano, with RB Leipzig ready to sell the defender at the end of the season.
The Gunners saw a bid rejected for Dayot Upamecano, who was viewed as a replacement for Laurent Koscielny—after the veteran defender forced a move to Bordeaux. Failing to sign the RB Leipzig centre-half saw Arsenal eventually settle down with David Luiz.
However, Upamecano firmly remains on Unai Emery’s radar and the north London club could plan to recruit him in the summer of 2020. The report adds interested clubs would have to pay £52m to land Upamecano next summer.
Despite Leipzig planning a new contract offer to the defender in a bid to increase his release clause, Arsenal must go all out to recruit the Frenchman before the start of next season.
Arsenal desperately needed to address their defensive problems after conceding over 50 goals in the Premier League last season. And they’ve given themselves too much to do for another season when the problem could’ve been quite easily resolved.
Emery did sign William Saliba in the summer but the defender returned to Saint-Etienne on a season-long loan.
The arrival of David Luiz from Chelsea was deemed as a shrewd piece of business but the Brazilian has looked all over the place, failing to tighten the backline alongside Sokratis Papastathopoulos this campaign.
With error-prone Shkodran Mustafi on the fringes and Konstantinos Mavropanos a regular on the treatment table, Arsenal desperately need to bring in another world-class centre-back to push on under Emery and challenge for better things. Rob Holding, of course, is back from his injury; however, the Gunners could do well with the addition of Dayot Upamecano.
Upamecano joined RB Leipzig from Red Bull Salzburg in January 2017 and has gone on to establish himself as one of the best young defensive talents across Europe. He may be just 20 but the defender already has good experience in his locker.
The France Under-21 international is one of the best ball-playing centre-backs in the Bundesliga and is a good one-versus-one defender. He is athletic and has great recovery pace.
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Not only has he caught the eye with his aerial ability, sound game reading skills and recovery pace, but Upamecano has also impressed a lot with his technical abilities on the ball and his range of passing. At 20, the Frenchman is in the formative years of his career and is certainly deemed for bigger things in the future.
With Saliba set to join Arsenal next summer after the end of his loan spell at St. Etienne, someone like Upamecano would be the ideal long-term investment for Arsenal. A young centre-back with such well-rounded attributes would definitely be a perfect addition to Arsenal’s backline.