Arsene Wenger has reportedly set his sights on Leon Goretzka, and could attempt to sign the Schalke midfielder on a Bosman deal next summer
According to a report in Daily Mirror, Arsene Wenger is considering Leon Goretzka as the man to replace Mesut Ozil at the Emirates. With his compatriot looking set to call it quits at Arsenal, the Schalke midfielder could join the North London club on a Bosman move next summer.
Goretzka joined Schalke from boyhood club Vfl Bochum with a burgeoning reputation of being one of the most exciting young prospects in German football. Over the last four years, the player’s stature within Bundesliga has risen considerably, having been one of the standouts during a tough phase for Die Konigsblauen.
This season, Schalke have looked the part so far in the German top-flight, and they look like major Top 4 contenders. Unsurprisingly, Goretzka has played an instrumental role for Domenico Tedesco’s side, with four goals and an assist from 10 appearances across all competitions.
But while he has continued to go from strength to strength at Veltins-Arena, concerns around his future have been constantly mounting. Schalke have put several improved offers on the table for the Germany international, who has become a key proponent for his national side as well, but not to much avail.
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Goretzka has refused to commit to a new deal, and it is highly likely that he will move away from Schalke at the end of the season as a free agent. While the Bundesliga outfit are aiming to sell him in January, should he refuse to sign a new deal, clubs are reportedly prepared to wait till next summer to sign him for free.
One club that has followed his progress for a long time, and were linked with him this past summer, have rekindled their interest in Goretzka, to replace a player who is in a similar situation as the 22-year-old. At Arsenal, Mesut Ozil looks set to run out his current deal to leave the club for free next summer.
The playmaker is being heavily linked with a move to Barcelona, among other clubs, making his compatriot a viable target. While Goretzka will not be a like for like replacement for Ozil, his ability to control the tempo of the game is a quality Arsenal are missing in a player.
Additionally, his presence in midfield, possibly alongside Granit Xhaka could see Aaron Ramsey and Jack Wilshere play in their preferred advanced midfield role as well. But, with a talent like Goretzka set to be available as a free agent, Arsenal are likely to face stiff competition in his pursuit.
As far as the Gunners are concerned, should they succeed in securing his services, they would hope the 22-year-old will be able to emulate the success of Sead Kolasinac, who hasn’t taken long to become an instrumental figure at the Emirates upon his Bosman move.