Arsenal Opinion: Can Jean-Philippe Gbamin strengthen the Gunners?
According to reports arising from the Express, Cote D’Ivoire defender Jean-Philippe Gbamin has been a subject of interest from Premier League giants Arsenal with Unai Emery said to be very keen on bringing him to the Emirates.
Arsenal have had a multitude of injury problems throughout the season and for some inexplicable reason, they just can’t seem to get all the defenders fit for a single match. It’s as if the footballing gods just refuse to shower the Gunners’ defence with any kindness.
Rob Holding and Hector Bellerin are both long-term absentees who will be heavily missed. Holding started the season extremely well but his injury has come as a blow to Arsenal.
Added to this, all the defenders including Laurent Koscielny, Sokratis Papastathopoulos, Shkodran Mustafi and Konstantinos Mavropanos have been injured at some point along the season. For a team trying to push for top-4 and fight for the title, a defensive set-up like this just won’t do.
In the attack though, Arsenal have been brilliant when compared to the last few seasons under Arsene Wenger. Emery has certainly brought some life into players like Aaron Ramsey and Alexandre Lacazette while the additions of Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and Matteo Guendouzi have really toughened their core as well.
Currently in 5th place behind Manchester United, Arsenal need to spend some money in the upcoming summer transfer window to try and find a solution to this defensive fragility. While various players have been linked in the past, another missed opportunity could really cost this Gunners side.
Given the situation, their best option at this moment in time is to try and lure FSV Mainz defensive-midfielder Jean-Philippe Gbamin and that is exactly what Emery is planning, as suggested by The Express. He is an Ivorian international midfielder whose biggest strength is his supreme versatility.
While he does prefer to play in the middle of the park and direct the play, he is more than capable of filling in at centre-half and has played for Mainz in that position this season. His ball-playing ability will certainly help bring some fluidity to the Arsenal back-line.
He is a strong player with an excellent footballing brain. He reads the play extremely well and tends to exploit the opposition tactics by making smart interceptions and movements. The 23-year-old is over 6ft tall which also makes him a good presence in either box.
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He has played 19 league games for the Bundesliga outfit this term and has even scored 2 goals. This stat does, however, heavily downplay his amazing ability to strike the ball from distance. If Emery pulls off this move, then the thought of another defensive crisis will never enter the Emirates Stadium again.