According to reports coming from Portugal over the past day, Arsenal could now be looking to Sporting Lisbon midfielder William Carvalho to bolster their midfield ahead of the new campaign.
Record claim that the 25-year-old is seeking a move to the Premier League after a frustrating few seasons in the Portuguese capital, with the Gunners the main contenders for his signature.
It is understood that Carvalho has a release clause of just over £40 million in his contract, which doesn’t run out for another three years, but Arsenal could secure their man with a £26 million bid.
What could Carvalho bring to the Emirates?
Perhaps more than anything, Carvalho is such a calming presence in that defensive midfield position on the pitch and he could really bring a much-needed element of composure to Arsenal.
The likes of Granit Xhaka and Frances Coquelin, the chosen midfield duo by boss Arsene Wenger for the majority of last season, have struggled to impose themselves in a deep midfield role and have provided inadequate defensive cover at times whilst Aaron Ramsey is only just returning from injury.
And after missing out on Champions League football for the first time ever, last year, Arsenal can’t continue to fall behind their top four rivals and be cut open so easily down the middle of the park.
This is where Carvalho could arrive and thrive in the Premier League, with his physical presence – standing at six-feet and three-inches – making him an intimidating and tall figure to come up against.
Whereas Xhaka struggles with his recovery play when caught out of position, being left behind and often resorting to cynical fouls, heavily highlighted during the 3-0 loss to Chelsea on Saturday, the Portuguese midfielder possesses an excellent natural ability to be in the right place at the right time.
He is not the quickest, but he makes up for it with good tactical play, and a clever footballing brain with the ability to read the game, Meanwhile, his ability to distribute the ball would be a very useful asset.
At 25 years of age there is still plenty of time for Carvalho to develop into the world class player that he is always been touted for, and there is little doubt he could come in a help Arsenal press forward.