5 more alternatives Arsenal should consider after missing out on Buendia


NORWICH, ENGLAND - OCTOBER 03: Norwich City's Emi Buendia during the Sky Bet Championship match between Norwich City and Derby County at Carrow Road on October 3, 2020 in Norwich, England. (Photo by Hannah Fountain - CameraSport via Getty Images)

Buendia not the priority

Arsenal have seemingly missed out on signing Emi Buendia. The Argentine was a long-term target of Arsenal’s however they failed to make a significant move to get the deal done before their competitors.

Aston Villa were hellbent on securing the Argentine and they look to have now achieved that.

Arsenal were outfought and outbid in the end with suggestions he may not have been as high up the priority list to invoke a similar pursuit to the Birmingham-based club.

Now Arsenal will need to set their sights on securing an alternative. We have already covered a possible 4 options which you can check out here.

However, there are plenty more to discuss.

The 5 alternatives:

Pedro Gonçalves

One of the most exciting prospects on the European stage is Sporting Lisbon’s Pedro Gonçalves.

Formerly a Wolves youth player, Gonçalves moved away earlier than many of his compatriots and gradually, via Spain, found his way back to Portugal and helped Sporting to a first title in nearly 20 years.

His positioning shares some qualities of that with Buendia in regards to his versatility. He can play on the right hand side and drift more narrow but also play as an out and out number 10 which the Gunners will be intrigued by.

Whilst creativity has been lacking, Gonçalves’ lowly 4 assists may be of some slight concern however he more than makes up for it in the number of goals he scores.

23 league goals from his predominantly attacking midfield position is a staggering achievement. He will be highly sort after and it is rare that clubs in Portugal let their top talents go on the cheap.

However, if Arsenal are intent on improvement then it is going to take some serious spending to change their fortunes.

You can read an in-depth breakdown of Gonçalves here.

GIBRALTAR, GIBRALTAR - OCTOBER 13: Pedro Antonio Pereira Goncalves 'Pote' of Portugal U21 looks on during the UEFA Euro Under 21 Qualifier match between Gibraltar U21 and Portugal U21 at Victoria Stadium on October 13, 2020 in Gibraltar, Gibraltar. (Photo by Mateo Villalba/Quality Sport Images/Getty Images)

GIBRALTAR, GIBRALTAR – OCTOBER 13: Pedro Antonio Pereira Goncalves ‘Pote’ of Portugal U21 looks on during the UEFA Euro Under 21 Qualifier match between Gibraltar U21 and Portugal U21 at Victoria Stadium on October 13, 2020 in Gibraltar, Gibraltar. (Photo by Mateo Villalba/Quality Sport Images/Getty Images)

Marcel Sabitzer

The man who worried plenty of England players only a few days ago with his direct play, passing and shooting. Marcel Sabitzer has been one of the most consistently impressive figures in the Bundesliga since his rise at RB Leipzig.

Whilst he did spend some time, like so many other RB Leipzig players, at Red Bull Salzburg his route was different. Purchased by Leipzig straight from Rapid Vienna, he was loaned back to Austria with Salzburg where his numbers exploded.

He was brought immediately back and has continued his improvement. 8 goals and 4 assists this season may not impress greatly however his positioning at Leipzig has altered explaining this reduction.

Shifted slightly further back to a central midfield role is the reason the numbers have been affected. However, having just turned 27, he has plenty of years at the top and his 17 goal contributions in the Bundesliga in 19/20 playing in a more offensive position is evidence that he could be lethal for anyone, maybe Arsenal, who were to buy him.

5 more alternatives Arsenal should consider after missing out on Emi Buendia

STUTTGART, GERMANY – JANUARY 02: Marcel Sabitzer of Leipzig controls the ball during the Bundesliga match between VfB Stuttgart and RB Leipzig at Mercedes-Benz Arena on January 02, 2021 in Stuttgart, Germany. Sporting stadiums around Germany remain under strict restrictions due to the Coronavirus Pandemic as Government social distancing laws prohibit fans inside venues resulting in games being played behind closed doors. (Photo by Matthias Hangst/Getty Images)

Nabil Fekir

A long-time name associated with Arsenal. Nabil Fekir was previously linked with a move to the Gunners prior to Alexandre Lacazette’s arrival at the club.

His career has taken him on a very different journey and he now plies his trade in Spain with Real Betis. A move which drew much attention for its shock value, Fekir has been a bright spark for the Seville-based club.

Not known for being a string-puller behind the forwards, Fekir prefers a much more direct approach. Running at teams and driving the ball into the box to take shots. 11 goal involvements in La Liga from 33 appearances could certainly be improved upon and the hope of better players around him at Arsenal could bring that.

A departure is feasible and he has already been linked with a move to the Gunners this year.

Houssem Aouar

The man that never happened. Arsenal fans’ summer 2020 transfer window nemesis. Houssem Aouar seemed to be the Emi Buendia of the that window. Arsenal supporters may be slightly relieved they were put out of their misery significantly quicker regarding the Buendia links in comparison to the time spent hoping on Aouar.

He remained at Lyon and has not experienced as an impressive 2020/21 season and fell out of favour with the senior French national side too. There have even been suggestions he could move away for a significantly reduced fee.

Aouar is a player who has flourished playing in central midfield with a licence to roam forwards. He can play in a slightly wider role but more reserved than an out and out winger. He can also be positioned behind the main striker, however, his work in the other direction is restricted which is something to consider thanks to his defensive attributes.

7 goals and 3 assists in Ligue 1 weren’t enough to help earn Lyon Champions League football, another factor in the willingness to allow a sale. Aouar started just 23 games in the season out of his 30 appearances. It seems Lyon are ready to finally let go but will Arsenal be in for him once again?

PARIS, FRANCE - OCTOBER 7: Houssem Aouar of France reacts during the international friendly match between France and Ukraine at Stade de France on October 7, 2020 in Paris, France. (Photo by Xavier Laine/Getty Images)

PARIS, FRANCE – OCTOBER 7: Houssem Aouar of France reacts during the international friendly match between France and Ukraine at Stade de France on October 7, 2020 in Paris, France. (Photo by Xavier Laine/Getty Images)

Matheus Pereira

Despite West Brom being relegated, Matheus Pereira stood out from the crowd. He even scored a fine goal against Arsenal, driving at the retreating defence before slotting the ball past Bernd Leno.

It is likely that with the Baggies down, Pereira would be open to a move back to England’s top flight and his displays certainly would warrant a move.

The question will be is Arsenal too much of a step up and, in comparison to the other names on the list, is he worth his weight?

He scored 11 goals and recorded 6 assists playing in both a right wing position and central attacking midfield role. He also featured on the left which intriguingly was his most potent position with 3 goals in the 3 games he started there.

His versatility, goal threat and creative streak playing for one of the league’s less impressive sides does give pause for thought. Could he take his game to a much higher level and would Arsenal be willing to take the risk?

5 more alternatives Arsenal should consider after missing out on Emi Buendia

WEST BROMWICH, ENGLAND – OCTOBER 22: Matheus Pereira of West Bromwich Albion runs with the ball during the Sky Bet Championship match between West Bromwich Albion and Barnsley at The Hawthorns on October 22, 2019 in West Bromwich, England. (Photo by Malcolm Couzens/Getty Images)

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Premier League table

# Team MP D P
1 Manchester City FC 38 51 86
2 Manchester United FC 38 29 74
3 Liverpool FC 38 26 69
4 Chelsea FC 38 22 67
5 Leicester City FC 38 18 66
6 West Ham United FC 38 15 65
7 Tottenham Hotspur FC 38 23 62
8 Arsenal FC 38 16 61
9 Leeds United 38 8 59
10 Everton FC 38 -1 59
11 Aston Villa FC 38 9 55
12 Newcastle United FC 38 -16 45
13 Wolverhampton Wanderers FC 38 -16 45
14 Crystal Palace FC 38 -25 44
15 Southampton FC 38 -21 43
16 Brighton & Hove Albion FC 38 -6 41
17 Burnley FC 38 -22 39
18 Fulham FC 38 -26 28
19 West Bromwich Albion 38 -41 26
20 Sheffield United FC 38 -43 23
Player Team Goals
Kane, Harry Tottenham Hotspur FC 23
Salah, Mohamed Liverpool FC 22
Fernandes, Bruno Manchester United FC 17
Son, Heung Min Tottenham Hotspur FC 17
Bamford, Patrick Leeds United 17
Calvert-Lewin, Dominic Everton FC 16
Vardy, Jamie Leicester City FC 15
Watkins, Ollie Aston Villa FC 14
Gundogan, Ilkay Manchester City FC 13
Lacazette, Alexandre Arsenal FC 13
Wilson, Callum Newcastle United FC 12
Ings, Danny Southampton FC 12
Wood, Chris Burnley FC 12
Iheanacho, Kelechi Leicester City FC 12
Rashford, Marcus Manchester United FC 11
Mane, Sadio Liverpool FC 11
Pereira, Matheus West Bromwich Albion 11
Bale, Gareth Tottenham Hotspur FC 11
Zaha, Wilfried Crystal Palace FC 11
Sterling, Raheem Manchester City FC 10



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