Former Arsenal and Scotland forward Charlie Nicholas claims the Gunners should sign PSG midfielder Adrien Rabiot this summer.
Nicholas says that Rabiot, who is a free agent this summer, is the perfect option to replace the outgoing Aaron Ramsey, after the Welsh midfielder agreed a free transfer to Italian champions Juventus.
Speaking to Sky Sports, Nicholas claimed: “We need a box-to-box style midfield player and a player that can pick a pass too, so it is a matter of bringing in the right ones. I think you need to know your system, fit them in and see where it takes you.
“Adrien Rabiot will be a free-agent and been linked with different clubs, but I would take him. He has the quality and is of decent level, which Arsenal need.”
The 24-year-old French international is highly regarded but has only made 14 league appearances this season, having fallen out of favour following his refusal to sign a contract extension.
Arsenal’s financial restrictions this summer have been well publicised, with Emery rumoured to have a rather modest £40m budget. Signing Rabiot on a free would definitely help ease the gap left by Ramsey’s departure, but the Gunners will have competition, with Barcelona, Liverpool and Tottenham all linked with Rabiot in the past.
Rabiot’s wages could also prove a stumbling block to any move, the midfielder’s demands having reportedly put Real Madrid off making a move. Seeing as Arsenal were unwilling to meet Ramsey’s wage demands, any move for Rabiot would not be without its complications.
Arsenal have also been linked with Rabiot’s PSG teammate Christopher Nkunku, while Nicholas has said he would like to see Reiss Nelson come back into the team following his loan spell at German side Hoffenheim.
Nicholas also offered his thoughts on potential outgoings at Arsenal. The pundit added: “I would sell Henrikh Mkhitaryan and if I got the right money for Alex Iwobi I would sell him too.” Both players have been criticised for their form throughout the season.
Arsenal manager Unai Emery may well have to offload players to fund reinforcements this summer. The Spaniard will no doubt look to improve a defence that has kept just eight clean sheets in the league this season and that Nicholas claims is “bottom six” standard.
The Gunners have been linked with a number of defenders in recent weeks, including Getafe’s Djene Dakonam following his impressive season in La Liga.