Arsenal have made an enquiry to Southampton about the availability of midfielder Mario Lemina.
The Daily Mail report that the Gunners are one of a handful of clubs interested in the former Juventus midfielder, who despite being at the club for two years and joining for a reported £18 million has failed to nail down a first-team spot in the Southampton starting XI.
Lemina has been omitted from Ralph Hasenhuttl’s Southampton squad for pre-season (per the club’s official website) as the Saints travelled to Austria for their preparations for the upcoming 2019/20 Premier League season.
The Gabon international, who is valued on Transfermarkt at £13.5 million, is a player who has been linked with Arsenal in the past. Indeed, in 2017 the Evening Standard reported that former manager Arsene Wenger blocked a move for Lemina to join the Gunners despite the club’s performance comparison matrix system churning out the 25-year-old as a player who could improve the first-team squad.
With Southampton setting their asking price at £18 million for Lemina and Juventus once seeing the midfielder as the successor to Paul Pogba at the club (per the Evening Standard), Arsenal could be wise in trying to make a move for the shunned away Southampton midfielder with BBC Sport reporting that the Gunners are looking for a central midfielder this summer.
Of course, with Aaron Ramsey now a Juventus player, the Gunners are seemingly looking to replace the Welsh midfielder, and when you compare the former Arsenal man with Lemina from stats from WhoScored, it shows as to why the north London side have enquired about the Southampton player.
Lemina averaged more dribbles per game at 1.1 to Ramsey’s 0.4 as well as averaging the same number of shots per game than the former Cardiff City midfielder at 1.2. The Gabon international also averaged more passes per game at 38.6 to the Welshman’s 27.6 as well as averaging a higher pass completion rate at 86% to 82%.
With only a £46 million budget to play with the summer (per Football London), Lemina is seemingly an affordable option for the Gunners.
Arsenal fans, would you take Lemina this summer? Let us know!
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