Arsenal are set to lose young starlet Folarin Balogun for nothing in the summer. The Athletic claimed recently that the teenager is close to signing a pre-contract with a foreign club, and that is a massive blow for us.
Balogun is arguably our brightest attacking prospect. He has all the qualities to make it at the top level, but lack of game time under Mikel Arteta is pushing him away from the club.
Arsenal have Alexandre Lacazette, Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and Eddie Nketiah ahead of Balogun in the pecking order. Gabriel Martinelli can also play up front which makes things even more difficult for the young contract rebel.
Arteta and Edu have been trying hard to convince Balogun to stay but it looks like they have accepted defeat. The Gunners have now found a perfect replacement for the teenager, and he is reportedly available for next to nothing.
The Daily Mail claim that Arsenal are interested in Bursaspor starlet Ali Akman. The 18-year-old has just six months left on his contract and he has no plans of extending his current deal.
Akman, who has scored nine goals this season already, has been attracting interest from multiple European clubs including Chelsea. The report claims that Bursaspor want to make some many through his sale this month and are prepared to let him leave for as little as £3 million. That fee could still come down due to the impact of the pandemic.
Would Akman be a good signing?
Like Balogun, Akman is quick and skilful on the ball. His movement is one of his best traits and he is an extremely composed finisher on both feet. That is why a number of clubs across Europe are keeping an eye on him.
Akman can also play anywhere across the front three. That would give Arteta a number of options and unlike Balogun, he is unlikely to demand regular senior chances at the young age of 18.
With just a few months left on his deal, Akman is a very interesting option. He is a risk-free proposition for us and if he does make it at Arsenal, he can go on to lead our line for a decade, if not more.