Arsenal: £25m signing ‘could have been game-changer’ at the Emirates
Arsenal could have signed a ‘game changer’ if they had been successful in their pursuit of Aston Villa midfielder Douglas Luiz in the summer transfer window, according to journalist Paul Brown.
Mikel Arteta oversaw a busy few months of business at the Emirates, as over £100 million was spent on new recruits, but one failure may come back to bite them.
What happened with the Luiz chase?
Arsenal launched a pursuit of the Villa midfielder on deadline day, submitting an opening offer of £20 million, with the 24-year-old having entered the final year of his contract, according to The Telegraph.
However, two bids later, the Gunners gave up, with their final £25 million submission also being rejected by the West Midlands giants.
According to The Athletic, the decision to move for Luiz was made after Mohamed Elneny suffered an injury against Fulham that previous weekend.
Arteta also had his eye on Leicester City midfielder Youri Tielemans but a move for the Belgian never came to fruition before the deadline.
Albert Sambi Lokonga has been drafted in to start alongside Granit Xhaka in the Gunners’ last two matches, including Sunday’s 3-1 defeat to Manchester United.
What has Brown said on Luiz?
Brown believes that Arsenal are lacking a deep-lying midfielder with an impressive passing range who can dictate play.
The journalist adds that the likes of Lokonga, Xhaka and Thomas Partey all offer similar qualities and that signing a player such as Luiz could have been key.
Brown told GIVEMESPORT: “Probably the one profile of player that Arsenal don’t really have is a deep-lying midfielder who can spray the ball around, dictate the tempo and give them a slightly different option in there to what they have at the moment in Xhaka, Lokonga and Partey. All of those players are quite similar. Lakonga gives them a little bit more passing range and attacking threat, but he isn’t in the same class as some of the people that Arsenal looked at. I think if they’d been able to get a player like Luiz over the line, it could have been a game changer for them.”
Will Arsenal regret missing out on Luiz?
There is a worrying lack of depth in Arsenal’s midfield and, with the Europa League on the horizon, it could well come back to bite them.
Brown is also correct in that, at present, Arteta does not have an alternative plan to turn to when it comes to his midfield set-up, which can make the Gunners easy to play against.
It seems strange that Arsenal only made their move for Luiz on deadline day, after failing to add a similar player earlier in the window.
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