This week will see what many consider to be the long overdue international debut for Real Sociedad’s French winger, Antoine Griezmann.
The 22-year-old, who has earned rave reviews in La Liga recently, will be in the French squad to face the Dutch on Wednesday, and has reportedly caught the eye of Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger.
Ever since mercurial striker Thierry Henry packed his bags for a spot of Catalan sunshine and glory at the Camp Nou, the Gunners have been looking for a player who could take up the striker’s mantle.
Griezmann could indeed be that man.
His La Liga record of 15 goals to date for the unfashionable Basque club has put him just behind the more exalted names of Cristiano Ronaldo and Diego Costa in the scoring charts, and led to him being linked with many of Europe’s biggest clubs.
It goes without saying that both of La Liga’s big two will also have cast an eye over Griezmann, whilst Bayern Munich will be aware of the burgeoning talent, and the mega-rich Ligue 1 clubs will also be considering taking him back to France to showcase his skills in his homeland.
At just 22 years old, Griezmann is not yet the finished article and the upcoming months, as the season winds towards the World Cup, will be vital for his development. If he can continue his progress, a place in Les Bleus’ squad for Brazil will surely be his for the taking, and with a stage at the world’s biggest tournament, it could be a breakthrough year for the player.
Arsenal’s pursuit of Schalke’s Julian Draxler stalled during in the January window, and the Gunners still have a gap at the sharp end of their team, with only Olivier Giroud as the focal point.
If Wenger sees the opportunity to secure the signature of Griezmann and launch him as a Henry Mk 2, it could be a shrewd bit of business.If he can do this prior to the World Cup, where any kind of outstanding performance by the Frenchman will only inflate his price, that could be outstandingly astute.
The Gunners need to be aware however. Their’s is not the only interest in the player and if they want to beat the rush, they’ll need to ensure there’s no delay. Many defenders have tried to catch Griezmann and failed! The Gunners need to be sure that this time they get their man.
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