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Arsenal linked with £30.3m swoop for Jean-Philippe Gbamin

Arsenal seem to be linked with every centre back under the sun at the moment, but their latest target is exactly the type of player they should be pursuing.

What’s the story?

The Gunners have been linked with Samuel Umtiti this week, and now reports in Germany suggest they are eyeing Mainz sensation Jean-Philippe Gbamin.

Sport Witness report that the north Londoners were the only Premier League club named in a claim made by Sport Bild, in which the 23 year-old was touted for a €35m (£30.3m) move to England this summer.

Mainz sold Abdou Diallo to Borussia Dortmund last summer, and are expected to cash in on Gbamin as well while the going is high.

So why should the Gunners swoop for Gbamin?

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How good is he?

Capable of playing in midfield or defence, Gbamin has shone this season mostly as a defensive midfielder.

He is only 23, but has started 25 Bundesliga games, winning 1.7 aerial duels per game, scoring twice, and making 1.3 tackles and one interception per game, per Whoscored.

Gbamin isn’t just a defensive enforcer though, also boasting 1.2 shots per game, 0.7 key passes and one successful dribble.

The five-cap Ivory Coast international is smooth and strong on the ball, more than athletic enough to thrive in the fast-paced Premier League, and has all the technical qualities required to be a Gunner.

Two birds, one stone

What really separates Gbamin from targets like Umtiti is his aforementioned versatility. It is common knowledge that Unai Emery will be working with a restricted budget, so players who can play multiple positions at a high level are worth their weight in gold.

In fact, if the Gunners land a marquee centre back as well as Gbamin then that could be their defensive shopping done, thanks to the fact that he adds depth at two positions.

This would leave more funds to invest in what really matters, like a replacement for Aaron Ramsey or a goalscoring winger.

At £30.3m, playing the best season of his life and still with loads of room to grow and improve further, signing Gbamin would be an excellent start to Arsenal’s summer business.

Article title: Arsenal linked with £30.3m swoop for Jean-Philippe Gbamin

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