According to The Mirror, Arsenal are considering a surprise move for Crystal Palace left-back Patrick van Aanholt in the January transfer window.
Van Aanholt, 30, is out-of-contract at Selhurst Park at the end of this season as talks over a new deal have reportedly broken down between the club and his representatives, meaning the Dutchman will be free to leave south London for nothing in the summer when his current deal expires.
It’s claimed Gunners boss Mikel Arteta is keen to bring in a new left-back to provide competition and cover for regular starter Kieran Tierney.
Should the Palace chairman choose to sell him, Roy Hodgson’s first port of call would be Tyrick Mitchell, who has enjoyed a breakthrough campaign at Selhurst Park this season. However, at 21, he is still relatively inexperienced at this level and as such, cannot be expected to shoulder the burden of responsibility alone.
In terms of statistics, there isn’t too much to choose from between the two, with Mitchell averaging a slightly higher WhoScored match rating of 6.58 to Van Aanholt’s 6.52 this season.
In fact, the veteran is currently averaging more interceptions (1.4) than the academy graduate, which suggests that he boasts a greater understanding of positional awareness.
Van Aanholt, who began his career at Stamford Bridge with Chelsea, has made 202 Premier League appearances but Parish may opt to sell him right now rather than lose him for free in the summer.
However, Parish’s relative inactivity in the last transfer market has left him with little choice. Perhaps he should have considered finding a backup for Mitchell beforehand and not have focused so heavily on signing the likes of Michy Batshuayi and Nathan Ferguson instead.
AND in other news, Crystal Palace can’t afford to lose Christian Benteke amid West Brom interest…