Lots of Arsenal’s problems lie within their inability to provide defensive solidity.
This season, they have conceded 36 goals in the Premier League – only three sides in the top 10 have shipped more. David Luiz’s arrival from Chelsea last summer appears to have done little to make the Gunners stronger at the back.
With the summer transfer window to be here before we know it, adding to that area of the pitch is likely to be one of Mikel Arteta’s prime objectives.
According to The Daily Mirror, West Ham’s Issa Diop is on the Emirates outfit’s radar. They are the latest top side to be eyeing the 23-year-old – Manchester United were said to be interested in him last year. However, there are plenty of reasons why he is not the answer to Arteta’s problems.
First and foremost, it is worth looking at the Hammers’ own defensive record this season. They have conceded 50 goals in the top flight – only three sides have shipped more than David Moyes’ side, and Diop has played 23 of those fixtures to date.
Not only that, but Diop is arguably no better than what Arsenal already have at their disposal. Shkodran Mustafi is not exactly the most popular figure in north London, but he actually leads the Frenchman in a number of areas – he has won 68% of his duels compared to 64%, whilst he has given just 0.8 fouls away per game compared to one.
Not only that, his side have kept two clean sheets in the six games he has started – West Ham have just three in 22 with Diop in the starting XI.
Currently valued at £31.5m by Transfermarkt, he is unlikely to be a cheap option, either. Of course, defensive recruitment is a necessity for the club moving forward, but that does not mean that Diop is the answer. The Arsenal hierarchy must go back to the drawing board and look elsewhere for the solution to their problems.