According to Mundo Deportivo, Spanish giants Atletico Madrid are ‘keeping track’ of France and Arsenal striker, Alexandre Lacazette. The 28-year-old hasn’t had his most prolific season this term and some reports have suggested he is looking for a way out of North London.
Lacazette’s season so far…
As I mentioned just above, this hasn’t been the best season of Lacazette’s career – not by a long margin. Currently, he sits on just nine goals from his 26 appearances across all competitions.
In his two previous seasons at Arsenal, Lacazette has scored a fair bit more than he has this season. In 2017/18, the Frenchman managed 17 goals in 32 appearances across all competitions. The following year, he nabbed 19 in 49 in all comps.
This year, he doesn’t look likely to reach those sort of numbers. He’s been named in the starting XI 15 of the 24 times he’s been a member of the match-day squad in the Premier League and played all of his games this term as a central striker – so there’s no other explanation for his lack of goals than just poor form.
Having said that, I’m a Newcastle United fan and would absolutely kill for my team to have somebody currently sitting on nine goals in all competitions. Our top scorer has six – but it’s all relative. For Arsenal Football Club – nine goals in all competitions in March isn’t good enough for their central striker.
Would a shift to Atletico be good for him?
Well, it would allow him to “escape” the Premier League and North London, if indeed those reports are true and that is indeed what he is looking to do. Spain, while a most luxurious place to go to play football from the outside looking in, can sometimes be something of a pit of misery for players – especially if they don’t find their form.
With their cut-throat headlines and destructive nature, the Spanish media can be nothing short of terrifying for footballers in Spain to deal with. A lot of people think the media in the UK is too critical, but the Daily Mirror has nothing on the likes of Marca.
As for on the pitch, there’ll be some healthy competition for Lacazette if he is to find himself in Madrid, he’ll also find himself in a furious battle for game-time. The likes of Alvaro Morata, Diego Costa, Joao Felix and Angel Correa are all in around the Atletico first team – but they have struggled for goals this season. By contrast, Lionel Messi has 19 goals by himself in the league this season.
Between them, the four names I have mentioned have 19 goals in the league – 61% of Atletico’s 31 league goals. Diego Simeone’s team haven’t quite lived up their usual high standards and currently sit sixth in La Liga, 13 points behind league leaders Barcelona.
Lacazette would allow for a different option at the Wanda Metropolitano, be it off the bench or from the start. All-in-all, I think it could be a great move for all involved, but only if the fee is reasonable.
Currently, TransferMarkt have Lacazette valued at £54m which, in my opinion, is about £20m too much. As great a player as he has been over the years, he’s never scored more than 20 goals in a season for Arsenal.
As well as that, he is now in his late twenties. By the time this move materialises, if it happens at all, Lacazette will be 29 and coming towards the end of his peak. For me, £30-40m seems a fair price for the Frenchman and if an offer comes in of that ilk, the Gunners should take it and run.