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Arsenal hoping versatile Zinchenko can add midfield spark

Zinchenko joins Arsenal

Arsenal announced on Monday they had reached an agreement on the signing of Oleksandr Zinchenko from Manchester City for a reported fee of £30 million. Zinchenko is the second player Arsenal have poached from Man City in this transfer window, as they brought in Brazilian striker Gabriel Jesus a couple of weeks ago.

While Zinchenko is a natural left-back, it is expected he will play in the midfield for Arsenal. The Gunners currently have a surplus at left-back and Kiernan Tierney is the presumed starter at that position. Zinchenko usually plays in the midfield when he is playing for the Ukraine national team, where he is one of the star players.

Zinchenko is only 25 years old and still has a lot of potential. He spent six years at Man City and would float around 30 appearances each season. Most of those appearances were off the bench, and it’s been reported Zinchenko wanted to leave in order to play more as a starter. It appears like his wish will be granted in Arsenal, as he will likely be a much more important player for the North London side.

Manchester City have been more shrewd in this transfer window than they have in the past. They have sold Raheem Sterling, Jesus and now Zinchenko, all for fees over £30 million. Considering the money City have to work with, it is a little surprising to see them sell off so many useful players. However, they are still a stacked team and should be back at the top of the Premier League table once again in this coming season. That being said, City apparently are looking at bringing in Brighton & Hove Albion left-back Marc Cucurella to cover the departure of Zinchenko.

Arsenal boss Mikel Arteta is also in the midst of transforming his team. He is targeting players who, like Zinchenko, can play in multiple positions and will give his team more options moving forward. Arsenal have a good core of young players like Bukayo Saka and Emile Smith Rowe, so bringing in proven veterans will help fill in the gaps around them. Zinchenko may not have been the most important player for City, but he was a part of four title-winning teams. Bringing in guys like that will go a long way towards building Arsenal’s own winning culture.

While Arsenal have definitely improved their squad this transfer window, they are a long way off from competing for Premier League honours. They should be in the mix for a top-four finish, but even their biggest fans will admit this team is not ready for a title challenge. Still, considering Arsenal’s struggles in recent seasons, these pieces of business are giving a weary fanbase a lot of optimism. As long as Arsenal improve, their supporters will be happy, and it looks like the Gunners are taking the necessary steps towards getting better.

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