Arsenal will be looking to step up their pursuit of a Martin Odegaard replacement after statistics revealed that he was their most creative player last season.
football.london understands that the Gunners are looking for recruits in at least five positions as Mikel Arteta seeks to “ruthlessly overhaul his squad” after they failed to qualify for European competition for the first time in 25 years.
High on that list of priorities is a new creative midfielder to help share the burden with Hale End graduate Emile Smith Rowe after Odegaard confirmed that he wouldn’t be returning to Arsenal on a permanent deal.
Edu has already tried and failed to sign Emi Buendia this summer, meanwhile, the Gunners are also reportedly interested in bringing James Maddison to north London but his expensive fee is proving to be a huge stumbling block.
However, Arsenal’s technical director will be looking to get a move on, especially after statistics from Data specialists Opta, as revealed by Orbinho on Twitter, showed that Odegaard had the best minutes per chance created record of any Arsenal player last season.
With an average of one chance created every 49.5 minutes from open play in all competitions, Odegaard topped a list that displayed the Gunners’ struggles to create last season.
Next best was Arsenal’s new number one creative, Smith Rowe, who conjured up a chance every 59.9 minutes on average, whilst some Reiss Nelson, who struggled for game time all season, was next best in third.
But as Smith Rowe is still only 20-years-old, and because he has already suffered from his fair share of injury concerns, the Gunners simply cannot afford to put so much pressure on a young man’s shoulders.
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Source by Football London