Mikel Arteta uses Thierry Henry to perfect Arsenal’s next big transfer signing – Bailey Keogh

Arsenal’s latest transfer hunt has suggested the Gunners are looking to build a new Thierry Henry. Mikel Arteta is aiming to sign wingers who could also thrive as a striker.

According to Dutch media International Ball, the Gunners are in pole position to sign Cody Gakpo from PSV Eindhoven. The youngster had been linked with a move to the Emirates during the January transfer window but a deal never managed to materialise.

Various reports suggest the Gunners will have to do battle with Paris Saint-Germain and a host of Premier League clubs in the hope of securing the signature of Marcus Rashford. Gakpo and Rashford are very similar in terms of positional sense, which was identical to Henry before his flourishing at Arsenal.

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Before Henry became an all-time Arsenal great, he was more recognized as a left winger who could occasionally play as a striker. Eventually, Wenger turned Henry into a striker, but his earlier abilities from his previous role contributed to his dominance as a striker.

It looks like Arteta is looking to follow the same trend when analyzing the Gunners’ recent transfer targets. The two players who have been linked with the club can follow the same trajectory as Arsenal’s all-time top scorer.

Gakpo has played 32 games on the left side for PSV this season and has only played three games as a centre-forward. However, he showed a clinical nature regardless of his position as he scored 12 goals on the left wing and three goals in three games as a striker.

The 22-year-old would struggle to play immediately as a striker in the Premier League due to the league’s increased competitiveness compared to the Eredivisie. It would be wise for him to feature on the wings before eventually moving to a striker position.

Rashford is another player who is strongest in the wing positions but has also shown his qualities as a centre-forward. The Englishman has played 146 games on the left side during his career and has scored 46 times, while providing 34 assists.

His record as a striker is also impressive with 42 goals in 120 appearances. It shows that he is capable of being moved into the striker role later in his career.

Arsenal will be desperate for two new strikers in the summer transfer window, with the days of Lacazette and Eddie Nketiah looking increasingly numbered. Both players’ contracts are due to expire at the end of the season and they have been linked with leaving the club.

If Arteta can rebuild Henry with his new signing, the Gunners will certainly go a long way in solving the issues for incoming forwards. Gakpo would be the better option than Rashford as he seems to have a higher ceiling and better physical build to be able to lead a forward line.

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