Arsenal have been linked with a move for Southampton starlet Romeo Lavia, amidst speculation that Thomas Partey could depart the club this summer.

Mikel Arteta has already added to his midfield with Kai Havertz joining and Declan Rice set to follow, but he could increase Arsenal’s expenditure even further with a move for the 19-year-old.

Partey has been linked with a number of clubs in Italy and Saudi Arabia. The 30-year-old was a key player for Arsenal last season, but with a poor injury record and two years remaining on his contract, the Gunners may be tempted to cash in if a big offer arrives.

Selling both Partey and Granit Xhaka in one window is a big gamble for Arsenal, and whilst Rice will arrive having captained West Ham to a European trophy, Lavia would arrive with much less experience, after just one top-flight season with Southampton.

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How do Lavia’s stats compare to Partey’s?

Lavia made 34 appearances across all competitions as Southampton were relegated from the Premier League, but stood out as one of the more impressive performers in the team.

The teenager ranks significantly higher than Partey for blocks as per FBref, with both players typically playing in the more defensive number six role.

However, when it comes to distributing the ball, comparisons are not even remotely close. Partey ranks as one of the best passers, and progressive passers in Europe, whilst Lavia ranks much lower among his peers.

Brighton & Hove Albion v Southampton FC - Premier League
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Both rank similarly for take-ons, with both players strong at dribbling and holding the ball in the middle of the park, but physically Partey also ranks a lot higher for aerial duels.

It is clear that Lavia will not be able to replicate everything Partey offers at the base of midfield, but given his age and performance levels, he may be able to succeed him in the role in the future.

If Arsenal do not have a better replacement lined up for Partey, then selling him would be a huge risk to their title hopes, even if they receive a huge fee for the Ghana international.

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