Laurent Koscielny’s been a great servant to Arsenal, but it’s time he moved on. Indeed, if Unai Emery can sign Samuel Umtiti, he’d transform the Gunners’ defence completely.
The 25-year-old Barcelona centre-back has been linked to Arsenal by L’Equipe (via Sport Witness), who claim Emery is considering bringing the Frenchman to North London. Well, if he came, he’d make Arsenal’s back-line so much more difficult to break down.
This season, the likes of Shkodran Mustafi have made the Gunners’ defence into a laughing stock. They’ve conceded more goals than each of the four teams in front of them and 11 more than arch-rivals Spurs. Frankly, it’s been a woeful season at the back.
Koscielny’s too old now, and it’s time for a younger, stronger central defender to step up. Now, that man can be Umtiti. Indeed, he’s still young too and that means he could be part of a defence that challenges for the title over the next seven or eight years.
He’s played just 15 games this season for Barcelona and hasn’t proved the quality that many thought he’d show over the last three campaigns since signing from Lyon for £22.5m. That’s ideal for Arsenal though, because it could mean they get their chance to unlock his talent instead.
Umtiti is the kind of player who could completely transform the Gunners’ defence, with the ability to keep things tight and play out from the back. He’s built like a brick wall and his pace makes him almost impossible to get past, so bringing him into the Gunners’ weak defence would be huge.
He’s got a contract until 2023 and is valued on Transfermarkt at £63m, so he won’t be cheap. Arsenal will need to splash the cash if they’re to secure their man, but it’ll be worth it if he can plug the leaky defence and be their long-term Koscielny replacement.
Arsenal may have found their man, but whether the board will allow Emery to chase him or not remains to be seen.
Arsenal fans, who do you think the club will sign as a replacement for Koscielny? Join the discussion by commenting below.
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