Here’s a look at 4 reasons why the Gunners should make a concrete move for Upamecano;
The Current Situation
Arsenal have struggled to prevent teams from breaking them down all season long. The Gunners’ current group of centre-backs – Shkodran Mustafi, Sokratis and David Luiz are simply not good enough to be at Arsenal anymore.
Arsenal, in general, have been below par this season, but the team’s defence can be singled out as its weakest link, and as such, The Gunners have to introduce a new defender to the backline.
Freddie Ljungberg’s side is in dire need of an upgrade, and Upamecano, realistically, is one of the few players who can offer that upgrade.
There’s a common trend in football where a centre-back’s ability tends to be dependent on his age due to the fact that for centre-backs, age is directly linked to their perceived experience level.
While that holds true in some cases, there are some centre-backs who regardless of the amount of top level experience they’ve had will always be class acts, Dayot Upamecano is one of them.
Despite being 21-years-old, Upamecano performs at a level well above his years as he’s able to put himself in the right positions to thwart attacks whilst maintaining his composure within his team’s backline. He’s not quite world-class yet, though, but a few seasons in the Premier League can put him right up there with the best defenders in the world.
A Perfect Partner For Saliba
William Saliba, 18, is set to fully join Arsenal next season, when he arrives, he would be able to form a potentially long-term partnership with Upamecano as opposed to Mustafi, Luiz or Sokratis, all of whom are going into the latter stages of their respective careers.
Saliba and Upamecano are both French, they are also pretty close in age – this could potentially facilitate good chemistry and potentially a strong partnership between the pair thus giving Arsenal a solid defensive double-act, something they have lacked for quite some time now.
There’s a reason that despite being only 21, Upamecano is highly rated in the Bundesliga.
The Leipzig man has proven to be a reliable defender capable of keeping things tidy at the back, tracking runs, thwarting incoming attacks and distributing the ball properly.
These might sound like common traits for defenders but no defender at Arsenal right now can consistently put all these abilities on display – if they could, The Gunners would be in a far better position than they’re currently in.
Upamecano boasts a 91.1% pass success rate and has won 67.6% of all the duels he has contested (185), and from this point on, he can only get better.