Arsenal have been urged to sign Ollie Watkins instead of Ivan Toney in the January transfer window. Mikel Arteta wants to sign a striker and Mikael Silvestre has given his verdict on who the Gunners should bring in.
Striker is set to be the next position Arteta looks to strengthen. The Arsenal boss added in goal, defence and midfield in the summer transfer window but not up top.
Gabriel Jesus and Eddie Nketiah are the two main options in attack but the pair have just four goals between them in all competitions so far this season. Brentford frontman Toney has been linked with a January move to the Emirates.
His eight-month ban for breaching the FA’s betting rules comes to an end early next year. His contract at Brentford expires in 2025 and the likes of Chelsea and Tottenham have also been linked with his signature.
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Toney is thought to be Arsenal’s top striker target but Ollie Watkins has also been rumoured to be of interest. Silvestre says the Aston Villa star, who has eight goals for club and country this season, would be the better option.
Silvestre told GGRecon: “Right now you have Eddie Nketiah at the club alongside Gabriel Jesus, but signing a third striker could present them with a luxury that could be useful at this level, especially when you consider the amount of games that Arsenal could potentially play this season.
“The team always needs healthy competition and it needs quality, so if Arsenal were to sign another striker in the near future, then it would be Watkins over Toney if the decision was up to me.”
It may be difficult for Arsenal to prise Watkins away from Villa anytime soon. The 27-year-old only signed a new long-term contract earlier this month to keep him at Villa Park until 2028.
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Arsenal are back in action against Chelsea this weekend and will be hoping Gabriel Jesus returns fully fit from his midweek exploits with Brazil. Silvestre believes the former Manchester City star can be a prolific goalscorer if he stays injury-free.
He added: “Gabriel has tremendous talent and if he wasn’t injured last season, then he would have scored a lot more goals for Arsenal. They need to give him a full season and see if he can score 25 goals because that’s what’s required for number nines in the Premier League, especially when you’re playing for one of the top clubs that have ambitions of winning the title.
“Gabriel likes to shift from the central position, so he’s not a typical centre-forward that’s going to remain within the 18-yard box. He covers a lot of ground, does a lot for the team, and gives them options in the channels as well.
“I believe he can be a prolific goalscorer for Arsenal if he can remain fit for the entire season.”
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