In today’s Transfer News Live, we bring you reports on Arsenal transfer target from the Belgian Super League. If reports are to be believed, Arsenal might be on the verge of sealing a move for Anderlecht central midfielder Albert Sambi Lokonga in a deal that could rise to €22m.
Here’s a quick insight into the 21-year-old Arsenal transfer target destined for North London.
The talented young Belgian recently recovered from a serious knee injury and has become a key component of Anderlecht’s rebuild under Vincent Kompany. He made his debut for the club aged 17, and at 21 he already captains the side.
Sambi Lokonga is a confident, athletic & energetic central midfielder who’s known for his mobility. He also uses his body well to protect the ball, allowing him to spin away from markers, especially against teams that employ a high press. From there, he’s capable of driving into space ahead of him.
Lokonga recycles the ball well in defensive areas and passes it crisply and enjoys dictating play from deep. One of his major strengths is his ability to switch the play/angle of attacks with precision passing over longer distances. This might allow Thomas Partey to move more vertically in a box-to-box role.
Sambi Lokonga’s awareness and technique in defensive phases are both areas where he can improve. He has the potential to become a top-class ball-winner but needs to improve his decision-making in his own third in order to do that.
What Transfer Target, Sambi Lokonga’s signing could mean for Arsenal
Lokonga isn’t prolific in any defensive midfield metrics. He doesn’t make a large number of tackles, blocks and clearances per 90 minutes, but what he does do well is defend the space. His defensive intelligence off the ball might facilitate a switch back to Mikel Arteta’s favoured 433 system.
Arsenal’s midfield unit would gradually become a more dynamic and less static one with Lokonga in it. Fans of the North London side will be hoping that Lokonga allows Thomas Partey to flourish in the heart of the engine room but supporters will need to be patient, though, as Lokonga is still developing.
According to Fabrizio Romano, Arsenal will pay €17.5m upfront, with €4.5m as potential add-ons, to secure Lokonga’s services. Anderlecht wants to insert a 15% sell-on clause into the deal too. Arsenal on their path, are only willing to offer 5% sell-on clause in the deal. It is believed, that is the only remaining detail to be completed and the transfer becomes official.
Other Arsenal Transfer News.
With Arsenal in the final stages of talks with Roma over the sale of Granit Xhaka. But the clubs are still far apart in their valuation of the Swiss captain, who led his Switzerland side to the quarter final stage of the ongoing EURO2020, putting in an impressive performance in the Swiss penalty shootout victory over world champions France.
In other Arsenal transfer news, Arsenal are set to complete the transfer of Benfica left back, Nuno Tavares in the next few days along with that of Albert Sambi Lonkonga. Arsenal are short of options at the left back position since the exit of Sead Kolasinac (on loan ) to Schalker 04 in January and he is set to be released this summer after his contract was not renewed.
The Portuguese 21 year old left back will provide the much needed cover for Arsenal’s Scottish left back, Kieran Tierney, who recently signed an improved contract with the club. Tavares will play second fiddle to Tierney who has struggled with a few injuries in his Arsenal two year career so far.
Nuno Tavares is expected to fly to London today to undergo a medical check at Arsenal’s London Colony training center, after Benfica and Arsenal agreed a deal believed to be in the region of $12million and the deal could be announced in the next coming few days.