Alexandre Lacazette is already showing why Arsenal spent a club record fee to sign him from Lyon, and plenty of people around the club have noted how good he could be for the Gunners.
Former Lyon coach Remi Garde told FourFourTwo that Lacazette always reflects on his performances and looks at how he can improve, saying: “When you talk about intelligence in football, patience is a part of that – he symbolises that. Instead of thinking it was other people’s fault, he knew how to assess himself and keep working hard.”
According to current Lyon boss Bruno Génésio, these were traits that the 26-year-old needed to reach the top level, because at first they weren’t sure he would.
“He’s a player that we weren’t really betting on at the start. He has always grown through adversity. For example, he signed his first pro contract after the others [in his age group], so he deserves all the more praise,” he revealed.
Since the move to North London, Lacazette has been compared to Arsenal’s record goalscorers Thierry Henry and Ian Wright. Wright said to FourFourTwo that he thinks the French international looks like he has the confidence to succeed.
“As a striker, you’ve got to have that swagger and he seems very confident. In the last three seasons he’s scored 20-plus league goals, so why wouldn’t he be? People say that it’s only Ligue 1, but consistency is consistency, whatever league you play in.”
Meanwhile in France, comparisons have been made to fellow Frenchman and ex-Lyon youth graduate Karim Benzema. Lyon’s under-17 coach Armand Garrido believes the Arsenal striker has something more than Benzema, saying: “Alex has that bit extra when it comes to keeping possession and link-up play. And he is perhaps shrewder than Karim.”
With 37 goals in 45 games all competitions last season, while netting more than 20 league goals in each of the last three campaigns, Arsenal fans will just be pleased they’ve finally got someone ruthless in the final third.
Lacazette may have just got started with the Gunners this season, but he’s already beginning to show how clinical he can be. The French international has racked up 271 minutes of playing time, scoring two goals, as well as having one controversially ruled out for offside.
His shot accuracy sits at 80%, higher than the likes of Tottenham Hotspur’s Harry Kane, Chelsea striker Alvaro Morata, Manchester United centre-forward Lukaku and Manchester City’s Agüero. Impressively, he’s also scored with his only shot from outside the box.
So if the 26-year-old can keep that up when Arsenal start to provide him with more chances in games, there’s no reason he won’t be among the Premier League’s top goalscorers at the end of the season.