Why Nathan Ake Should Be Attracting Interest From Spurs & Arsenal

From @NathanAke (Twitter)

Nathan Ake is in good company when it comes to players leaving Chelsea and flourishing elsewhere.

Mohamed Salah, Romelu Lukaku and Kevin de Bruyne all left Stamford Bridge and just look at them now. Can Ake follow suit and become a defensive star for a top Premier League team?

The Dutch defender has been in terrific form for AFC Bournemouth this season. The Cherries are flying and while the attack is getting a lot of plaudits, centre-back Nathan is also shining.

Top four wannabes Arsenal and Tottenham Hotspur could and should be looking at Nathan Ake as a man that could come in and improve their defence.

Under new boss Unai Emery, The Gunners have visibly improved but you can see that they still need to improve at the back. They’ve conceded the most out of the top five teams in the Premier League, so far this season.

I’m still not convinced that Shkodran Mustafi is fully suited to the new style at the Emirates, as he’s not the most comfortable on the ball and he’s still got a few clangers in him. I’m also not convinced we’ll see Frenchman Laurent Koscielny back to his best when he returns from injury. He was already beginning to lose a bit of pace before the lay-off and I doubt he’ll recover that much needed speed.

At Spurs, Argentine manager Mauricio Pochettino must be considering his defensive options.

Toby Alderweireld is almost certainly going to be leaving the Lilywhites within the next two transfer windows. The Belgian internationalist has declined any offer of a new deal and next summer he’ll be available at a cut-price fee of ¬£25m. Then you’ve got fellow Belgian central defender Jan Vertonghen, who has once again succumbed to an injury problem. Being the wrong side of thirty, Pochettino might be thinking of bringing in another youthful centre-back.

In Ake, both sides would be bringing in a player with valued English top flight experience. That should see him settle in quickly if he were to return to London.

One key attribute that would suit either team is the twenty-three year old’s distribution from the backline. The Dutchman has got an 89.7% passing success rate; that’s more than any Spurs or Gunners defender during this campaign. He’s also confident enough on the ball to stride out of defence with it and start attacking moves from deep positions.

Nathan is also strong when it comes to making clearances, averaging over five per game this season. Plus he has a strong work ethic and a determination to prove himself.

Ake would also bring in a versatility and high concentration levels. He can play as a centre-back, left back or as an effective holding midfielder.

The defender’s form with The Cherries has won him international recognition and he now has now made seven appearances for The Netherlands.

Bournemouth boss Eddie Howe has relished watching Nathan Ake improve as a player but realises that his impressive form will bring potential suitors:

“Nathan’s been excellent,”

“We had a real fight to get him in the summer. His loan spell had really put him to the fore in terms of the spotlight and exposure.”

“I think he’s very happy here and sees the team and the club progressing,”

It will be interesting to see if a big club comes in for Ake and how much they are willing to pay for an impressive ball playing centre-back.

 

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