Tuesday, January 31, 2023

Arsenal Sent Scouts To Catch This Italian Midfielder In Action Again: Time For Emery To Make A Move?

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Abhinab Ghosh
A 26-year-old sports writer and an aspiring football coach who has road-tripped across the Scottish Highlands, but has never been to Wales. Sucker for cliff-hangers and catchy riffs. Known to be a grunger and not to be a stranger.

According to a recent report by the Daily Star, Arsenal continues to monitor the progress of Cagliari Calcio midfielder Nicolo Barella. The same source has revealed that the Gunners had sent scouts to catch the Italian youngster in action for the Serie A outfit against Juventus last night. Barella operated in an attacking midfield role but failed to help his team score on the night as Juve defeated them by a 2-0 scoreline.

Barella’s Season At A Glance

Barella has enjoyed a brilliant campaign with his boyhood club thus far after putting in a string of eye-catching performances for them during this season which has helped the club climb to the 13th spot of the Serie A table, eight points above the relegation zone.

The 22-year-old midfielder has featured in a total of 31 matches for the Italian side this term, scoring one goal while grabbing three assists in all competitions. The Cagliari born star also managed to earn five international caps for Italy and has one goal for his nation to his name.

Barella is versatile enough to feature as both an attacking midfielder or play in a more restricted holding midfield role. He has made an average of 2.9 tackles, 1.3 interceptions and 0.7 clearances per match in the Italian top-flight this season (Stats taken from Whoscored).

Barella’s Strengths And Weaknesses

Barella has enough pace in his locker to make some dangerous runs with the ball in the opposition half. He has an eye for a killer pass in the final third but needs to improve his decision-making which has sometimes let him down this season. Furthermore, there are still some question marks on whether the Cagliari star can cope with the physical demands of Premier League football.

The Gunners have already seen Denis Suarez, a player of a similar mould to Barella, struggle to adapt to life in North London. So it will be a considerable gamble to bring the Italian starlet out of his comfort zone to play in a completely different environment to what he is used to at Cagliari. 

Should The Gunners Move In For Him?

Even though it would be a risk, Barella has incredible potential and could be a future star in the making. Hence, Emery should consider bringing him to the Premier League next summer as he will significantly bolster his midfield options, especially after the impending departure of Aaron Ramsey to Juventus at the end of this campaign.

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