Arsenal opinion: Should the Gunners sign Cristiano Piccini?
According to a report from MSN, Arsenal are keen on signing Valencia’s Italian right-back Cristiano Piccini over a deal in the summer. Piccini has been hugely impressive for the Spanish side this season and he could compete with Hector Bellerin for the role next season.
The Gunners have missed the services of Bellerin after he suffered a horrible injury earlier in the season. Ainsley Maitland-Niles has been an outstanding back-up at right-back, despite it not being his natural position.
Summer signing Stephan Lichtsteiner has failed to replicate his form from over the years at 35 years of age, the Gunners cannot expect anything more beyond the end of the season. Carl Jenkinson, as hardworking as he has been, is not the quality that Arsenal need to push on for the title.\
Reinforcements across the defence should be a massive priority for the Gunners in the summer and Cristiano Piccini at right-back would be a smart move on their part.
Arsenal could get a closer look at the Italian this week when they host Valencia in the semi-finals of the Europa League but he has already proven his quality in the La Liga this season.
Since making the move from Sporting Lisbon last summer, Piccini has played 33 times for Valencia in all competitions and has been a key figure in Marcelino’s side this season. Piccini has struggled with muscular injuries but despite that, he has shown his qualities on the ball.
Piccini is a calm and composed figure on the ball, who is capable of carrying it forward from one end of the pitch to another.
The Italian has the impressive trait of finding space for himself in the advanced areas of the pitch, which makes him available for a pass from his teammates.
His combination play down the right flank will definitely suit Arsenal’s style of play and he could prove to be a real asset on the attack for them next season.
Piccini is incredibly hard-working and his energy off the ball has been incredibly impressive this season. This will be a huge hit in Unai Emery’s system, who has been very demanding with respect to his players’ work-rates this season.
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Signing Cristiano Piccini would benefit Arsenal massively, especially with the potential departures of Stephan Lichtsteiner and Carl Jenkinson, whose contracts will expire in the summer.
The Italian’s addition will provide brilliant competition to Bellerin and will also allow Maitland-Niles to have a go at his natural midfield role.