Monday, October 2, 2023

Arsenal Are Facing Stiff Competition For This Talented Defender: Is He Worth The Fight?

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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.

In a recent report, Italian news outlet Firenze Viola stated that Arsenal are facing stiff competition for Dinamo Zagreb defender Josip Sutalo this summer. It has been revealed that the Gunners will have to rival  Ajax, RB Leipzig, Fulham and Napoli in the race to land the Croatia international.

Sutalo’s Impressive Form In European Football Last Season

Sutalo had a solid campaign at the Croat club last season when he put in a run of impressive performances for them on the defensive end of the field. The Capljina-born talent was involved in 36 matches for his current employers last season in all competitions.

The 23-year-old proved his worth in European football after he averaged 2.0 tackles, 1.5 interceptions and 4.3 clearances per game in the UEFA Champions League. He has even been accurate when distributing the ball from the back based on his pass completion rate of 86.8% in European football (stats via whoscored).

His current contract at Dinamo Zagreb will expire in the summer of 2028. Hence, it won’t be easy for the Gunners to sign him on a cut-price deal ahead of the new campaign.

Josip Sutalo
Morocco’s forward Youssef En-Nesyri (L) and Croatia’s defender Josip Sutalo fight for the ball during the Qatar 2022 World Cup football third place play-off match between Croatia and Morocco at Khalifa International Stadium in Doha on December 17, 2022. (Photo by ADRIAN DENNIS / AFP) (Photo by ADRIAN DENNIS/AFP via Getty Images)

Arsenal Are Facing Stiff Competition For Sutalo: Is He Worth The Fight?

Sutalo is a solid tackler of the ball and can make a few timely interceptions for his team inside his half. He can sense the danger quickly and usually clears his lines when the opposition are on the front foot.

Standing at 1.90m, the Croatia international is a commanding presence in the air and is also proficient at playing his way out from the back. However, he is yet to prove his worth outside his homeland.

At 23, Sutalo has got a very promising future ahead of him. Hence, he would be an excellent signing for the Gunners this summer.

Sutalo has what it takes to serve as a useful presence in Arsenal boss Mikel Arteta‘s squad next season. He will also help the North London club compete across all fronts in the coming years. Hence, he will be well worth the fight if Arsenal decide to get a deal over the line for him before the start of the new campaign.

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