Arsenal could yet sign Ilkay Gundogan this summer.
Ilkay Gundogan was a target for Arsenal boss Mikel Arteta earlier this summer, but the 32-year-old midfielder opted to sign for Barcelona upon the expiry of his Manchester City contract, rather than switch to the Emirates Stadium or extend his stay with Pep Guardiola’s side.
However, due to the Catalan club’s financial struggles, they haven’t yet been able to officially register Gundogan. According to Forbes, due to a clause in the German’s contract, if Barcelona aren’t able to register him by Sunday then he could become a free agent once again.
This would present the Gunners with an unexpected second chance to tempt Gundogan to north London. If that opportunity does present itself then Arteta and Edu must jump at it.
Why Arsenal must sign Gundogan if they can
There is room for another midfielder in the Arsenal squad, and whilst Gundogan’s age profile doesn’t align with Arteta’s typical targets, his quality cannot be overlooked. The Spanish coach is clearly an admirer of Gundogan from his time as Guardiola’s assistant, and the player’s experience of winning major trophies would be a real asset in the Arsenal dressing room.
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Gundogan still has plenty to give on the pitch too. He was in stunning form for Manchester City last season. He made 51 appearances in all competitions, scoring 11 goals and providing 7 assists, as he captained the club to a historic treble.
The likes of Declan Rice and Kai Havertz could learn a great deal from Gundogan’s presence, and he would be able to cover in the ‘left-eight’ advanced midfield position that Granit Xhaka made his own last season.
Given his age, and the intense nature of Arteta’s style of play, Gundogan wouldn’t necessarily be a weekly starter, but his quality, leadership ability, and experience would make him a hugely valuable addition to the Arsenal squad.