This article forms part of our Transfer Scenario feature, which is where Football Transfer Tavern takes a look at a recent transfer rumour and suggests what the potential consequences would be, should a deal be completed.
It’s perhaps fair to say Arsenal haven’t been the best in defence since Arsene Wenger’s later years as manager of the club. Last season alone, the club conceded 51 goals in the top-flight as they were unable to keep a single clean sheet away from home until their second to last game against Watford.
David Luiz was signed and after conceding two penalties in his first four games with the club, the problems don’t exactly look as if they’ve been fixed.
There have been reports from The Mirror (via football.london) that Manchester City are attempting to hijack a move for Upamecano in January. So, let’s say the Gunners do complete the signing of the France youth international, what impact will he have?
Upamecano’s defensive capabilities are something that sets him apart from the players the Gunners currently have in their ranks. The young Frenchman has been a beast of a defender since signing for Red Bull Leipzig in the summer of 2017.
Last season with the German club, he has averaged the most interceptions (2.2), the third-most clearances (2.9) and was dribbled past the least number of times than any other Leipzig defender (0.2) (via WhoScored).
His numbers proved far stronger than any of Unai Emery’s men, despite the defender being just 21-years-old. He averaged more interceptions, made the fifth-most clearances and was dribbled past the least amount of times than any Arsenal player. This comes despite the defender suffering a season-ending knee injury in January (via Transfermarkt).
Ability to grow and his value
With Upamecano that would not be an issue as the player is only 21-years-old, and as seen by his statistics above, is a far better option than most of Arsenal’s defenders in problem areas.
His current value on Transfermarkt stands at a healthy £36m, and with Arsenal having already had a €60m (roughly £51.3m) rejected in the summer, you could argue the defender is already incredibly valuable. The player’s contract is due to end in the summer of 2021, hence why a January sale is being touted, in order to protect his value.
Let’s say Arsenal buy the defender and don’t achieve their targets, the defender could well want to move on to bigger and better things. His value now means there is no reason why the club’s transfer committee can’t fetch a high fee than €60m for the player in the future when he reaches the peak of his career if he continues in the same vein of form.
Arsenal fans, would Upamecano be a good defender to buy in January? Let us know your thoughts!
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