Arsenal should think about signing Andre Gomes from Barcelona this summer

Barcelona have put him up for sale

For many years now, Arsenal have been lauded for the attractive manner in which they play their football.

Whilst Premier League fare is often about the physical battle between two sides, the north Londoners have rarely deviated from their particular way of working, winning them a whole host of admirers in the process.

Arsene Wenger can take much of the credit for that, injecting a little continental style into what was a basic 4-4-2 set up when he arrived.

By the end of his tenure, the team were looking a little tired stylistically, though Unai Emery has taken the reins and brought in a different way of doing things but none less attractive than his predecessor.

One thing he’s missed, as did the Frenchman for many of his later years in the job, is having a midfield general in situ, just to break up the play when needed.

When we think of the really successful spell that Arsenal had under Wenger, we immediately recall Patrick Vieira.

A marauding midfield powerhouse who, far from upsetting the flow to the Gunners’ game, enhanced it with his direct running, physical attributes and superb passing range.

Aaron Ramsey, before he left for Juventus, was a reasonably able exponent but who succumbed to injury more often than he or Arsenal would like, stunting his growth in the process.

Granit Xhaka was expected to fulfill the role, but he too has only been really at it in fits and starts.

Trying to find a player in that position, with experience and who offers value for money, is like finding a needle in a haystack, but if the Gunners play their cards right, there is one player who could fit the bill.


At 26 years of age by the time the season starts, Andre Gomes is perfect for the position and, what’s more, he’s now had decent Premier League experience to go with a few seasons in La Liga.

He’s a player that is vastly underrated and is on the market for only £30m, a fraction of what Barcelona paid for him to join them from Valencia.

Solid with both feet, he’s able to work either flank as required. A preference for driving at the heart of the opposition defence often brings its reward too.

Gomes is deceptively strong and is rarely knocked off balance, meaning a high percentage of ball retention is a given, something that Arsenal hold dear.

As he’s shown at Everton too, he isn’t frightened to put a foot in, which is something that Emery desperately needs from his central midfielders. Far too often they were undone last season when losing the ball in the central areas.

Given the opportunity, he’ll also weigh in with a goal or two, but that isn’t necessarily his forte. Not that it should detract from his quality, mind.

With Arsenal looking to improve upon their fifth placed finish last season, they need a Vieira MK II to put roots down in the red and white half of north London.

They need look no further than the Portuguese international.