Arsenal’s activity in the transfer window this summer may not be finished just yet, as the Gunners are reportedly interested in signing Lyon midfielder Bruno Guimaraes.
As football.london reported back in May, Arteta is looking to overhaul the Arsenal squad by bringing in at least five players before the transfer window ends, with Nuno Tavares, Albert Sambi Lokonga and Ben White already arriving at the Emirates this summer.
One of the names linked with a move to North London is Bruno Guimaraes, as a potential alternative to Sassuolo star Manuel Locatelli, who looks set to join Juventus.
The 23-year-old signed for Lyon in the 2020/21 winter transfer window for £18million, making 46 appearances for the French outfit, scoring three goals and registering two assists from midfield.
Arsenal have previously been linked with Lyon’s Houssem Aouar, yet it is Guimaraes who is being linked with the club as the Gunners look to bolster Mikel Arteta’s midfield options ahead of the 2021/22 season.
So, what would happen if Guimaraes was to join the Gunners and make the switch across the Channel to North London for next season? Let’s take a look…
We ‘signed’ Bruno Guimaraes for Arsenal this summer
To set up this simulation, we used the Football Manager 2021 editor to arrange for Bruno Guimaraes to join the Gunners ahead of the new season.
The 23-year-old was paired with Thomas Partey in midfield, offering a solid platform for the attackers to create opportunities without fear of being counter-attacked.
Let’s take a look at how Guimaraes performed across all competitions for the Gunners and how he performed on the virtual pitch for Arteta’s side.
Guimaraes made a total of 37 appearances for the Gunners across all competitions, with the Brazillian being rested in the domestic cup competitions, scoring 10 goals and registering nine assists in his debut season at the Emirates.
Guimaraes was the top performer for Arsenal throughout the 2021/22 season, with an average match rating of 7.72, ahead of both Bukayo Saka (7.67) and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang (7.48).
The 23-year-old worked well in a midfield pivot with Partey, with Guimaraes acting as a box-to-box midfielder rather than a defensive playmaker as the Ghanaian midfielder was Arteta’s preferred choice to protect the defence.
Guimaraes was clearly the more attacking midfielder of the pair, bettering Partey in pass completion (91 per cent), key passes per 90 minutes (2.19) and distance covered per 90 (9.8km), compared to Partey’s 88 per cent pass completion rate, 2.01 key passes per 90 and 9.5km distance covered per 90 minutes.
At the end of the 2021/22 season, Football Manager 2021 put together an overall best Arsenal XI, based on performances, statistics and other metrics.
Full Arsenal best XI: Leno; Bellerin, White, Gabriel, Tierney; Guimaraes, Partey; Pepe, Smith Rowe, Saka; Aubameyang.
So how did the Gunners perform across all competitions in our simulated season with Guimaraes in the midfield?
Arsenal’s simulated 2021/22 season with Bruno Guimaraes
Here is how the final 2021/22 season league table looked once the simulation finished at the end of May 2022.
Arsenal finished in fourth place, securing Champions League qualification for the 2022/23 season after six seasons out of the competition, above rivals Tottenham Hotspur by seven points.
However, with Guimaraes in the side they conceded one more goal than they did last season when they finished eighth in 2020/21.
Arteta’s side weren’t really competitive in the domestic cup competitions, being knocked out on penalties to Newcastle in the Carabao cup third round and losing 3-0 to Liverpool in the FA Cup fifth round.
Football Manager 2021 predicts that Guimaraes could provide significant support for Arsenal’s attack from a deeper position, having a spectacular debut season for the Gunners, finishing as the best overall performer in Arteta’s squad.
The simulation suggests that Guimaraes could help Arsenal achieve Champions League qualification for the first time in six years, if he joined the club with the likes of Nuno Tavares, Albert Sambi Lokonga and Ben White.
Would you be happy to see Arsenal sign Bruno Guimaraes ahead of the new season? Let us know in the comments!
Source by Football London