Mikel Arteta has had a promising start to life as Arsenal manager.
The Spaniard was appointed in December 2019 following the sacking of Unai Emery, and has so far presided over 15 matches. To date, the Gunners have been on the losing end on just two occasions, picking up eight victories and five draws.
During the January transfer window, the Emirates outfit signed Cedric Soares and Pablo Mari on loan, but if they want to compete with the elite clubs at the top of the table, they will need more recruitment – they are still in ninth place in the Premier League despite the upturn in form under Arteta.
Amongst potential recruits is Leon Bailey. According to the Daily Express, Arsenal are one of the sides said to be pursuing the Bayer Leverkusen man along with Manchester United, Liverpool and Chelsea – the latter are even said to be lining up an £85m offer.
However, this could very well be a disastrous signing from the Gunners if he were to make the switch.
Here are three reasons why…
The Jamaica international burst onto the scene during the 2017/18 season, scoring 12 goals and providing six assists for Leverkusen in Germany. However, he has struggled to follow that up – he managed just five strikes and five assists last term, whilst he has started just seven games this term under Peter Bosz in the Bundesliga.
The seven goals and one assist he has managed in all competitions still show that there is talent there, but it is still worth considering that he has not fully gained the trust of his manager to be a guaranteed starter.
The Gunners certainly need reinforcements in some areas – they have conceded 36 goals this term, worse than seven of the other sides in the top 10, indicating that some new arrivals to boost the backline would not go amiss – but the left-wing is not one of them.
Of the three, it would likely be Martinelli who would be under the most pressure – as per Transfermarkt, he has played the most in that position, 14 times to be exact. Bringing in Bailey would surely mean his position would be under threat, which would be a shame considering his promise this term.
Arsenal are not exactly the richest of clubs in the Premier League. Reports have indicated that they could have a net spend of as much as £60m in the next transfer window – whenever that may be – which is not a huge amount in today’s transfer market. Eight clubs have recorded bigger numbers than that this season, including the Gunners themselves.
Therefore, given Chelsea are lining up an £85m bid, it would be nothing but madness from Raul Sanllehi to get involved in a potential transfer battle for Bailey.
Arsenal will need to be clever with their spending – this is not the way to do it.