Arsenal have already felt the full force of a flying Cody Gakpo. Just ask William Saliba, the Gunners’ elite French defender who hasn’t been bullied very regularly this term.
The imperious centre-half has been one of the great success stories of Arsenal’s campaign so far, stepping in from the wilderness on loan to become one of the first names on the team sheet.
Few have got the better of him, but if your name is Gakpo, you have been successful.
Mikel Arteta’s men lost 2-0 to PSV Eindhoven a week ago in the Europa League and it was the Dutch attacker who ran the show in the final third.
The 23-year-old had a beautiful dinked finish ruled out in the first half for offside while coming close with two other attempts at goal.
He made three key passes on the night and was also successful with 100% of his dribbles. It was a dominative display and proved exactly why Arsenal should explore a move in January.
Recent reports suggest the winger is on their radar and if he does sign, he could be the club’s new Thierry Henry.
Now, that is an incredibly bold statement to make but there are comparisons. For starters, they have both played on the left and up top, with their dangerous ability to cut inside a clear parallel.
Furthermore, the Dutch superstar, who was dubbed an “enormous talent” by scout Jacek Kulig, has also tried to copy the great French striker.
In an interview with The Times, Gakpo said: “I’m a tall winger, but when you look for tall wingers there aren’t so many, so a few years ago I started watching Henry.
“He was more of a striker, but he was also tall and he liked to play off the side like me, so I watched clips of him and tried to learn something from him: the way he comes in from the left and shoots with his right.”
That should be exciting for any onlookers, particularly those of an Arsenal persuasion, who could get a glimpse of him at the World Cup later this month.
Boasting a rather ridiculous record of 13 goals and 16 assists already this season, he could be one of the real breakout stars in Qatar this winter, with those in Group A of the competition likely fearful of just what he might be able to do for Louis van Gaal’s side.
A productive World Cup will likely ensure a bidding war for his services, but Edu must ensure he is at the front of the queue for a player who may cost in the region of £34m.