Many eyebrows were raised when Arsenal splashed £46.5million on Olympique Lyon striker, Alexandre Lacazette. The Frenchman became the club’s record transfer signing and with that came a lot of expectation. Arsenal fans have been crying out for a pacey striker ever since Thierry Henry left the club for Barcelona and Alexandre Lacazette is meant to be the man to fire Arsenal back to the glory days. To look at how realistic that is, we must analyse his previous scoring record and then look at his current performances.
Alexandre Lacazette has been touted as a clinical striker for his productive time in Ligue 1. Last season, the 26-year old scored 37 goals in all competitions. On top of that, the Frenchman had the best conversion rate (38.9%) of anyone in Europe’s top 5 leagues with 20+ goals, that was better than both Cristiano Ronaldo or Lionel Messi.
Such performances earned him the privilege of being in the Ligue 1 TOTS for three successive seasons. In the four seasons he played as the main figure for Lyon, nobody in France scored more goals than him. The Frenchman even broke the record twice for the most goals in a single league campaign for Lyon. That’s why many hoped he’d translate that form into North London.
It was inevitable that the Frenchman’s performances would be compared to the likes of Alvaro Morata and Romelu Lukaku, both have hit the ground running. In 6 league games, Alvaro Morata has scored 6 goals while providing 2 assists. Meanwhile, Romelu Lukaku has scored the same amount. Harry Kane, on the other hand, is trailing behind with 4 goals and Sergio Agüero is also on the coveted 6. The elites of the Premier League are all making their mark for the Golden Boot, so let’s see how our Frenchman is performing.
In 5 league starts and 1 substitute appearance, Alexandre Lacazette has scored 4 goals already, two coming against West Brom on Monday. This averages out at a ratio of 0.67 goals per match. In those 6 appearances, he’s had 12 shots, 7 of which were on target, equating to a shot accuracy of 58%.
His overall play has also been up to par; he’s averaged 21.17 passes per match, most of them coming in the final third. Off the ball he’s made 3 tackles, blocked 2 shots, made 4 clearances and intercepted 1 pass, not only has he taken the league by storm, he’s adapted to its physicality.
As of today, the trio of Alexandre Lacazette, Alexis Sánchez and Mesut Özil still haven’t started a game together; it’s only then will we see the Frenchman at his best. He and Sánchez would make interesting runs off each other, while, Mesut Özil drops back to supply their movement.
At this moment in time, Lacazette is doing his best to keep up with the elites of the Premier League. However, he will have to improve his clinical nature in the big games, as he’s failed to score against Liverpool once and Chelsea twice.