Arsenal are close to sealing a deal for Borussia Monchengladbach midfielder Granit Xhaka, according to latest reports from Germany.
Over the past few months, Xhaka’s future has come under strong speculation, with several heavyweight Premier League clubs, including the likes of Liverpool and Chelsea, been linked with a move for the Swiss midfielder.
The Reds were thought to be interested in Xhaka as well, with reports surfacing Jurgen Klopp, the Reds manager, was ready to lodge a club record bid to secure his signature during the January transfer window.
However, it seems like Xhaka has finally found a club of his choice. According to reports from Sport 1, the 23-year-old Basel-born midfielder will join the Gunners in the summer.
Xhaka has a contract at Gladbach till 2019, and Arsenal will have to pay a high transfer fee around €30-40m to force Gladbach into selling their prized asset.
The addition of Elneny leaves Arsenal with a surplus of midfielders on their books. But Wenger is probably thinking long term here. Both Flamini and Arteta are out of contract in the summer and are likely to leave the club. With Jack Wilshere’s injury problems remain a serious issue for the club, Arsenal are in need of able-bodied reinforcements.
Xhaka is a terrific player and could become a complete midfielder, should he fulfils his potential. Being a left-footer he is a contrast to Arsenal’s other midfield players. Cazorla, Ramsey, Coquelin, Elneny et al are all right footed, so Xhaka can bring a nice balance and variety to the midfield.
The best part of his game is he can do everything – a jack of all trade type. He is a good tackler, an effective ball winner, makes darting runs into the box, has wonderful technical skills, has an eye for long passes and he is a considerable threat at set-pieces too.
Another highlighting feature of his game is his distribution from the base of the midfield. He is a reliable passer who can operate both as an advanced player and a defensive midfielder. At the start of his career, he used to play as no 10 but quickly turned into a player capable of dictating the tempo from deeper positions.
Xhaka would be a terrific signing for the Gunners. His price tag is slightly on the higher side but it seems Wenger is prepared to do another big money transfer deal for the Swiss midfielder.