Arsenal are interested in signing Chelsea midfielder Tiemoue Bakayoko who returned to Stamford Bridge last month after a successful loan spell with the Serie A club AC Milan.
According to a report from RMC Sport, the 24-year-old has garnered interest from one too many clubs in Paris Saint-Germain and Premier League giants in Arsenal and Manchester United.
However, Chelsea will decide on the French international’s future after the training camp in Ireland next week, the report adds.
Bakayoko, who has a contract with the Blues until 2022, managed 1 goal and 1 assist in 42 appearances across all competitions in the recently concluded campaign.
A sensible choice by Emery?
Bakayoko enjoyed an excellent campaign with Monaco and earned his move to the London based outfit two years back in 2017.
However, the French international endured a nightmare debut season in the Premier League and was shipped out on loan where he attracted genuine interest after a successful season in the Italian top-flight.
Bakayoko showed his comfortable nature with the ball at his feet and recycled possession with excellent proficiency. He boasts a decent passing range and dribbling skills, which helps him break down opposition walls in central midfield.
The Chelsea man averaged a pass success rate of 86.6%, 1.3 long balls, 2 dribbles and 0.8 key passes per game across all competitions last term.
The 24-year-old, who stands at 6ft, also packs superior aerial prowess in his locker and contributes heavily in the defensive phase of the game.
He managed 2.3 tackles, 1.6 interceptions, 1.4 clearances and 2.4 aerial successful duels per 90 minutes which highlights his all-round ability to influence the game in the middle of the park.
The Chelsea star primarily features as a defensive midfielder but is fairly versatile and possesses the ability to play across the central midfield.
However, despite boasting all these attributes, the addition of the former Monaco star to the Gunners dressing room doesn’t sound like a wise choice.
Arsenal boss Unai Emery already has the services Matteo Guendouzi, Granit Xhaka and Lucas Torreira at his disposal.
It’s the one area on the pitch where the Emirates club possesses supreme players as compared to their Premier League counterparts.
The funds invested on Bakayoko could also be allocated to improve the defensive line which has suffered massively in recent years.
The lack of creativity in the final third which was largely exposed in the absence of Aaron Ramsey last season is another area to be addressed if Arsenal are to succeed in their chances of a rebuild anytime soon.
If Bakayoko’s move were to materialise, his baggage of a horrific experience in the English top-flight could prove disastrous for Arsenal.
All in all, this sounds like a potentially bad decision from a Gunners’ perspective especially taking into account the economic frailties at the Emirates Stadium.