Adrian Lopez, dubbed the "new David Villa," remains Arsenal's top January transfer target. Fresh reports in the UK press are linking Arsenal with a winter swoop for the Atletico Madrid forward.
The Daily Mirror states that Arsene Wenger is tempted by Lopez's near-£15 million release clause. The Gunners boss is also said to be pleased by his relatively reasonable wage demands. Lopez would be an excellent capture for Arsenal in the next transfer window. He is skilful, technically-alert and a classy finisher.
His addition would give Arsenal what they need most and that is a quick and crafty striker. Wenger's style of play better suits a mobile forward who can challenge defenses with pace. Lopez fits the bill. He is a shrewd attacker who utilises an intelligent range of movement to find space in and around the box.
He also fits in the kind of age bracket Wenger prefers, as he continues trying to build and keep a youthful squad together. Lopez is 24 and coming off his best season. He netted 19 goals in 2011/12, helping Madrid win the Europa League. The ex-Deportivo La Coruna man has not matched those performances so far this season.
Part of the reason is due to the man in front of him in the Atletico pecking order. Now that he spends more time as a central striker, Lopez must act as the understudy to the prolific Radamel Falcao. Last season, Lopez spent a lot of his time operating on the right in Madrid's front three. That versatility should also appeal to Wenger and Arsenal.
The Frenchman has allowed Theo Walcott to play as his central striker in Arsenal's last two games. The performances have been mixed, but the results positive. The Gunners have won both contests and Walcott's pace through the middle has been a key factor. Positioning Lopez on the right would add more scoring potential to Arsenal's own forward trio.
However, these kind of considerations still depend on how Walcott's own future is resolved. He is now playing in his favoured position, but if he still doesn't sign, Arsenal will need a replacement. Quick, technical and intelligent, Lopez would be an ideal choice.849839