Leeds United will, no doubt, be keen on bolstering their defensive unit in the upcoming summer transfer window. It is unclear whether star player Ben White will return to Elland Road next season while Gaetano Berardi’s contract expires in the summer, leaving Liam Cooper as the only option in central defence.
One player Leeds United could pursue is Arsenal star Rob Holding. The centre-back is reportedly set to be transfer listed by Mikel Arteta when the season ends. And in this article, we will discuss why Marcelo Bielsa should sign Rob Holding this summer.
How has Holding fared at Arsenal?
Holding initially joined Arsenal back in 2016, in a €3 million move from Bolton Wanderers. He was considered as a part of the team’s reserve side, although the defender didn’t take much time showcasing his potential. As a result, he was soon included in Arsene Wenger’s senior team plans.
Fast forward to 2020; however, Holding has not quite been able to live up to the expectations. He has featured in only 69 competitive matches for Arsenal, often finding himself trailing down the pecking order in the defensive unit. Injuries haven’t been kind either, with the 24-year-old notably suffering from an ACL problem in late 2018 that kept him out for more than eight months.
This season, Holding is not even considered in Mikel Arteta’s plans. And with the Spaniard seemingly keen on undergoing a major squad overhaul in the summer, the defender’s days at Emirates are indeed numbered.
Why Marcelo Bielsa should sign Rob Holding this summer
Holding might not be the most accomplished defender in the Premier League at the moment. But, he does have the characteristics that could help him significantly improve the Leeds United backline.
For one, the Arsenal star is extremely talented when it comes to ball distribution. He can effortlessly pick out passes and spread the ball all across the pitch. It could definitely help Leeds improve their build-up play, taking some of the burden off Kalvin Phillips in the process.
Also, Holding is known for his physical aggression and commitment, thus making him a tailor-made fit for Bielsa’s tactical style. The Englishman can create a formidable defensive partnership with someone like Cooper that could add another dimension to Leeds’ backline.
But perhaps more importantly, Holding is an easy target for Leeds at the moment. The Whites should have no difficulty offering the Arsenal star a lifeline this summer, chiefly if they can secure promotion. And with the Gunners set for a potential overhaul, Bielsa could likely sign him for a reasonable price as well, thus making him an ideal target for the Championship leaders.