Arsenal: Has Arteta found a winning formula for Gunners?
Arsenal boss Mikel Arteta has decided against pursuing Real Madrid star Isco following the emergence of Emile Smith Rowe, according to reports. Spain international Isco is one of a host of attacking midfielders linked with a move to Arsenal this month. The Gunners were struggling in front of goal up until the last three matches.
Arteta’s side scored just 12 goals in their first 13 Premier League matches of the campaign.
But eight goals in the last three matches, all being wins, has seemingly changed Arteta’s mind on his transfer plans.
Academy graduate Smith Rowe has started all three games and has contributed two assists from the No 10 position.
His performances have earned rave reviews from pundits and Arteta himself as the Spaniard puts his faith in youth.
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And Spanish outlet AS claim Arteta’s desire to pursue the signing of Isco have stopped because he doesn’t want to stunt the growth of the 20-year-old.
It would be difficult for Arteta to get both Isco and Smith Rowe in the same team as the pair play in virtually the same position on the pitch.
AS say the door has “closed” on a move to the Emirates for Isco, with Sevilla keen on signing the 28-year-old instead.
Isco is not the only attacking midfielder Arsenal have been linked with.
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Borussia Dortmund’s Julian Brandt, Norwich City’s Emiliano Buendia, and Dominik Szoboszlai, who has since joined RB Leipzig from Red Bull Salzburg, have all been rumoured targets of the Gunners.
Lyon star Houssem Aouar was a top target for Arteta last summer but a deal looks unlikely to happen this month.
The 4-0 win at West Brom on Saturday completed three wins in a row for the first time this season for Arsenal.
Two goals from Alexandre Lacazette and one apiece for Kieran Tierney and Bukayo Saka saw off Sam Allardyce’s struggling Baggies.
Gunners captain Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang once again failed to get on the scoresheet but Arteta says his team cannot rely on the 31-year-old to score the bulk of their goals.
“We can’t keep putting all the weight on Auba’s shoulders to score the goals,” Arteta said.
“We need contributions. The midfielders need to score more and give more assists, and we need goals from our wingers as well.
“Laca [Alexandre Lacazette] is in great form and has scored five goals in his last four games, which is what we need from our strikers.”
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