Premier League • England

Arsenal urged to complete mammoth Chelsea transfer that’ll relieve star who’s becoming a problem for Arteta

Ben Stewart
Chelsea's Romelu Lukaku celebrates scoring their side's third goal of the game with team-mates during the Premier League match at Elland Road, Leeds. Picture date: Wednesday May 11, 2022.

Paul Merson has insisted that a forgotten Chelsea star could be the perfect player to solve a problem Mikel Arteta has with his Arsenal squad.

The Gunners have taken huge strides forward over the past 12 months, but they just fell short of the Premier League title.

Merson believes that adding another goalscorer to the mix will be crucial next season. While the pundit does rate Gabriel Jesus, he thinks they need a more natural goalscorer.

“Arsenal need a centre-forward,” Merson told GiveMeSport. “They need someone who is going to get them 25 goals a season.

“I’m not having a go at Gabriel Jesus, he’s a very good player and he’s been a brilliant signing, but he’s not going to get you the goals you need on his own.

“The other day against Brighton, I don’t remember him ever looking like scoring. Jesus can play anywhere, so if you buy a striker he could still get in the team.

“He could play with a striker. Arsenal’s squad is bare, it wasn’t strong enough to win the league. They need to buy players. Top quality players.”

Jesus did spend a lengthy spell on the sidelines and has only started in 23 league matches this year. In that time he has scored 10 goals and provided five assists.

The Brazilian forward has averaged a goal every 198.5 minutes during this campaign. Arsenal have otherwise leaned on the likes of Bukayo Saka, Martin Odegaard and Gabriel Martinelli to provide the bulk of their goals.

Merson tells Arsenal to look at Chelsea star

As the Gunners are looking to add more firepower, Merson thinks that it could be worth looking at Romelu Lukaku this summer.

The Belgian forward has spent the season on loan with Inter Milan and his value has plummeted since his £97.5million move to Chelsea in 2021.

While there have been some suggestions that Mauricio Pochettino would be willing to hand Lukaku some opportunities next season, Chelsea would also consider offers for the forward.

“Romelu Lukaku might be available. The 30-year-old is an out-and-out centre-forward. He will stay up front and back into players, that might help Arsenal.

“They can’t be predictable. Every goal they score is a ‘good’ goal. They need to be able to score scrappy goals.”

While Lukaku hasn’t had the best of times lately, he still knows how to find the back of the net. Injuries haven’t helped this year, but his goal return for Inter has been solid.

In Serie A, he has averaged a goal every 165 minutes, which is a superior record to that of Jesus. He has also played a role in Inter reaching the Champions League final with three goals in Europe.

Given Arsenal will be competing in the Champions League next season too, it is vital that they add some European expertise to their squad.

Someone like Lukaku wouldn’t be a natural fit into Arteta’s fluid system, but he might be able to add the extra goals to push them to the next level.

READ MORE: Arsenal prepare stunning move for senior Man City star as game-changing triple deal gathers pace