Checking Out The Ajax Star That May Have Caught Arsenal’s Attention

Ajax rolled back the years and produced a European masterclass to eliminate current holders Real Madrid out of the Champions League.

It’s no surprise that the Dutch giants will be hosting a lot more scouts after such a classy victory. In fairness their talented group of players had already attracted the attention of some of the continent’s top clubs, with FC Barcelona already confirming that they’ll sign midfield sensation Frenkie de Jong for €75m in the summer (Via BBC Sport).

Talented Danish forward Kasper Dolberg will no doubt be interesting various top sides and Matthijs de Ligt is a superb defender who has recently been linked with a move to Liverpool (Source – Talksport).

Another player that’s being talked about with a possible move to the Premier League is left-back Nicolás Tagliafico. 

The Argentine is on Arsenal’s radar if The Daily Mail are to be believed.

So why would the North London club be interested in the Ajax defender? 

Well The Gunners will no doubt be interested in recruiting a new left-back when the summer transfer window reopens.

Nacho Monreal isn’t getting any younger, at thirty-three years of age, and the Spaniard seems to pick up various niggling injuries during a season.

Back-up Bosnian Sead Kolasinac looks vulnerable when he’s being tasked defensively.

Tagliafico would offer Monreal sterner competition for the left-back spot.

On average the Ajax defender makes more tackles (2.2), interceptions (2.2) and makes more crosses than the Gunners duo. According to stats from Whoscored, Nicolás also wins more aerial duels and makes more clearances than Kolasinac.

We all know that Arsenal coach Unai Emery likes his players to be good in possession and likes to see his full-backs push forward when they can and Tagliafico ticks those boxes. This season the Argentine has completed 85.7% of his passes in the Eredivisie and he makes on average 54.8 passes per league game too.

Tagliafuoco is a smart defender who gets himself into good positions both in attacking areas and when he’s defending.

Nicolás has played in twenty-six games for de Godenzonen this termand in that time he’s scored five goals and created three assists.

The left-back also represented Argentina in last summer’s World Cup and he now has twelve international caps.

Being twenty-six years old, the full-back should also be entering his peak years and that will probably interest Emery.

Then there’s the potential fee. The Sun are reporting that Ajax will be happy to double their money on the player who cost them £4m in January 2018. If that’s true then £8m for an Argentinian international left-back would be a great deal, especially for one who has shone in this year’s Champions League.

One potential stumbling block could be that Atletico Madrid are also being linked with the defender.

Nicolás Tagliafico stated that he was proud to have Atletico boss Diego Simeone interested in him:

“If Simeone is interested in me and really wants me it means I’m doing well but the important thing now though is to think about Ajax.”

If Arsenal are indeed looking for a new left-back and have a tight transfer budget to work with, then bringing in Tagliafico could be a great deal for the club as long as they can get his signature before any rivals swoop in!

Leave a Reply