Arsenal can sign their ‘new Vieira’ by hijacking Chelsea’s Onana move
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Arsenal have been told that they can sign a “young Patrick Vieira” this month in the form of Everton star Amadou Onana. The Gunners, alongside Chelsea, have been linked with the Belgian midfielder as the London rivals are hoping to take advantage of the Toffee’s financial woes.
Frank Lampard was recently sacked from his job at Goodison Park with Everton currently sat in the relegation zone in a precarious position. Due to their Financial Fair Play concerns, relegation could send the club into turmoil and they may be forced into selling one of their stars this month.
The London Evening Standard have reported that Arsenal could intervene in any Chelsea deal for either Onana or their other midfield target Moises Caicedo of Brighton. Onana only signed for Everton for £33million in the summer, but has been impressive amid a disappointing season on the blue side of Merseyside as a whole and could leave the club after just six months.
Former Everton boss Roberto Martinez handed Onana his debut for Belgium and named him in their World Cup squad during the Spaniard’s time in charge before he left to coach Portugal, clearly a big fan of the 21-year-old and even compared him to Arsenal icon Vieira before the midfielder made the move to Goodison Park.
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“Really exciting footballer,” Martinez told Sky Sports in the summer. “Off the ball, he is one of the most impressive young players with his capacity without the ball, the intensity, the way he can press, and then it’s that arrival into the box, sometimes he reminds you of a young Patrick Vieira in the way that he can drive with the ball. That’s a young player, he’s going to be 21 next week, so you’re still talking about potential, but what is already there is the leadership and the captain material that he brings to Everton.”
Onana missed training with Everton on Tuesday amid reports that he has been linked with a move away from the club, though Sky Sports have confirmed that the midfielder was given a scheduled leave of absence.
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Arsenal have been in the market for a midfielder after sealing deals for Leandro Trossard and Spezia defender Jakub Kiwior, as Onana has been mentioned alongside Leicester star Youri Tielemans and Real Sociedad’s Martin Zubimendi.
The Gunners have the money in the bank as they were prepared to spend up to £88.5m for Mykhaylo Mudryk and have only spent half of that on Trossard and Kiwior, though they have been turned down by Zubimendi.
Mikel Arteta’s outfit were reportedly prepared to pay the Spaniard’s £52.5m release clause, but the 23-year-old is not interested in a move to the Emirates, which could pave the way for Onana to join the Gunners instead.
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