Arsenal’s interest in Fulham man shows a change in strategy

    Arsenal are said to be one of a number of clubs interested in Fulham‘s Tosin Adarabioyo with the defender said to be open to leaving Craven Cottage this summer following their relegation – but would he be a good addition to the Gunners’ squad?

    There had been rumours of Mikel Arteta’s interest in adding another centre-back even prior to the reports that emerged last week regarding David Luiz’s future. The Brazilian is said to have informed the club of his intention to leave but with both William Saliba and Konstantinos Mavropanos out on loan, a new centre-back shouldn’t be the priority.

    With the Gunners having failed to qualify for the Champions League – combined with the impact of the pandemic – they’re unlikely to be able to spend big this summer without additional investment from KSE. And let’s face it, that’s not likely to happen.

    For years, Arsenal have overspent on players who have failed to elevate them to the next level and so a change in strategy when it comes to recruitment is needed. Tosin is 23-years-old, has a full season of Premier League experience under his belt and has shown signs he can go to be a very good centre-back.

    Arsene Wenger enjoyed incredible success at the start of his Gunners tenure largely due to the way he went about recruiting players. He’d take risks on players who hadn’t yet fulfilled their potential and signed plenty of them over the years. Like with any transfer there is an element of risk involved but if even just a percentage of them prove to be successful, it can lead to the team closing the gap on their rivals despite operating on a lower budget.

    You can look at the links with Tosin in one of two different ways. Are the club desperately short on funds and simply shopping in a lower category of player, or does their interest in the former Man City defender signal a significant change in their recruitment strategy?

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    Arsenal have spent big money in recent years on players who have failed to elevate them to the next level | Catherine Ivill/Getty Images

    We’d all love to see our club make marquee signings every summer that lead to instant success but at a time like this, any rebuild that takes place in north London will have to be done smartly, carefully, and with a consideration for the future.

    There’s no telling for certain whether Tosin will be capable of stepping up to the level the Arsenal fans demand but there is clearly some potential there, as well as plenty of time for him to develop and – should the club wish to do so – sell him on again.

    The player’s relationship with Arteta, who’d have had opportunities to watch him up close during his days working alongside Pep Guardiola, could be significant, with club’s from Germany as well as Newcastle United also said to be keen.

    It’s a signing that is low-risk and has the potential to bring a high reward – a strategy Arsenal have diverted away from in recent years, but if they are to restore their Champions League status in the coming seasons they may need to return to it.

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