Premier League • England

Arsenal handed boost as ideal Granit Xhaka replacement drops fresh hint over his next move

Ben Stewart
Emmen, Netherlands. 21st May, 2023. EMMEN, Stadium Oude Meerdijk, 21-05-2023, season 2022/2023, Dutch Eredivisie Football. FC Emmen player Mark Diemers Feyenoord player Orkun Kokcu during the match Emmen

Arsenal have identified an ideal midfield replacement for Granit Xhaka and their reported target has dropped a fresh hint over his future.

The Gunners are expected to be active in the summer window. Following the news that Xhaka is set to leave, Arsenal have shortlisted a number of potential replacements.

West Ham’s Declan Rice remains high up on Arsenal’s list. Although a deal for the England international certainly won’t come cheap.

While Arsenal do remain in the driving seat for Rice, they have expanded their search for a midfielder to the rest of Europe.

According to The Sun, Arsenal are lining up a deal for Feyenoord midfielder Orkun Kokcu as they see him as a suitable Xhaka replacement.

The likes of Liverpool and Tottenham also hold an interest in the midfielder. Kokcu has impressed this year and could be on the move this summer.

It has been claimed that the Dutch champions will demand a transfer fee of €40m (£34.7m). Arsenal could certainly afford Kokcu at that price and they could be tempted to submit a bid.

Considering that they could also lose the likes of Thomas Partey and Albert Sambi Lokonga, Arsenal will be in the market for more than one midfielder this summer.

They will have to fend off fellow Premier League clubs to secure Kokcu, but with the added lure of Champions League football, the Gunners are in a strong position.

Kokcu drops hint over future

The 22-year-old has impressed in the Eredivisie this season and he has dropped a fresh hint over where his future may lie.

“I’ve good relationship with the manager — but in case a bid arrived from the right club, I want to make the next step in my career,” the midfielder explained via Fabrizio Romano.

The holding midfielder seems open to a move this summer which can only be seen as a good thing from Arsenal’s perspective.

Under Mikel Arteta, the Gunners have often gone after young upcoming stars. Indeed, they currently have the youngest squad in the Premier League along with Southampton.

Kokcu would fit into that recruitment strategy being just 22. He would also bring a series of useful attributes to this Gunners midfield.

The Turkish midfielder offers a great deal off the ball, winning an average of 1.6 tackles per game in the Europa League.

Along with this, he also has an eye for goal. Across all competitions, Kokcu has scored 12 goals this season and has also provided five assists.

Producing an average of 2.8 key passes per game, it’s easy to see why so many top European sides are interested.

The main competition Arsenal will face for his signature will be from Liverpool. Tottenham have also been linked, but that talk has gone down following Arne Slot not taking the job.

Kokcu would be a fine addition to the Premier League and at just £34.7m, he could prove to be a bargain.

READ MORE: Arsenal prepare emergency £20m signing amid fears star’s ‘serious’ injury could bleed into next season