According to reports, Arsenal are considering a £45m move for Lyon’s Nabil Fekir, aiming to complete the deal before the World Cup but do the club really still want the 24-year-old?
The Daily Mail write that Fekir is Arsenal’s number one summer target. They also report that Lyon don’t want to sell their star man, but could do for the right price.
The 24-year-old has really stepped up to fill the gap left by Alexandre Lacazette this season. Last week he scored in Lyon’s 3-1 win over Villarreal, his 21st goal of the campaign. He also has five assists in his 31 matches.
Fekir is certainly a massive talent, and we know he has some interest in Arsenal. In December, he named the club among a list of six teams he’d like to go to. That wasn’t the first time the two were linked either.
In 2015, his father told reporters: “If [Fekir] leaves, it will be for Arsenal. It’s the only club that can enable him to progress, with Arsene Wenger.”
Still, I’m not sure why he would be a priority signing for Wenger.
In January, the Frenchman was touted as a replacement for Alexis Sanchez and Mesut Özil. Given his form and the similarity of his position on the pitch, that made sense. Some publications even claimed Arsenal had pretty much agreed a deal with Lyon for his transfer.
Now, Arsenal have replaced Sanchez with Henrikh Mkhitaryan. Meanwhile, Mesut Özil signed a new deal to stay at the club, and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang joined to add a few more goals.
At this stage, there isn’t much room in the attacking midfield department, and little need for an Özil/Sanchez replacement. The Frenchman is a few years younger than Arsenal’s current front three, but spending so much on a player for the future, in a position where the squad is already strong, seems like an odd strategy.
The club arguably have much bigger issues in defence, in goal and in defensive midfield. That’s where their focus should be this summer.
World Cup deadline
The competition doesn’t end until 15th July, and thanks to the Premier League’s decision to end the transfer window before the start of the season, deadline day is now on August 9th.
That doesn’t leave much time to do business after the international matches are over. It’s up to Arsenal to make sure they’re ready in advance.