Manchester City

Manchester City

Premier League • England

Arsenal, West Ham have contrasting plans for Zinchenko as Man City future comes into focus

Oleksandr Zinchenko reacting to a Ukraine defeat

Arsenal and West Ham are reportedly the two main suitors for Manchester City squad man Oleksandr Zinchenko, but each has a different plan for the player.

Zinchenko’s future is about to come into sharp focus for the summer transfer window. He was focusing on Ukraine’s push to qualify for the World Cup. However, their loss to Wales in a play-off means he can now consider his club status again.

The left-footer has played for Manchester City since 2017, after a loan spell at PSV. Originally a midfielder, he has often deputised at left-back under Pep Guardiola.

His versatility allowed him to make 28 appearances in all competitions during the 2021-22 season. However, for a 25-year-old, that may not be quite enough.

Zinchenko has been linked with a move away from City in recent weeks. According to the Evening Standard, it is now a battle between Arsenal and West Ham for his signature.

A move to Arsenal would allow Zinchenko to reunite with former City assistant manager Mikel Arteta. Alternatively, he could end up elsewhere in London by signing for West Ham.

The report claims he would likely occupy a different role for either club. Supposedly, Arsenal see him as a midfielder, whereas West Ham would mainly rely on him as a full-back.

That said, both clubs do have a need to reinforce the opposite positions as well. Therefore, he would be a useful option to change things up.

It could therefore depend on where Zinchenko wants to play tactically. At Arsenal, he could be restored to his original role in the centre of the pitch. In contrast, West Ham would offer him a role of prominence ahead of the likes of Aaron Cresswell and Arthur Masuaku.

Zinchenko and Man City right to consider separation

As for his current club, Zinchenko will not be held at the Etihad Stadium against his will. His contract there is due to expire in 2024, so this could be an optimal time to sell him.

Finding his next landing spot will be an interesting task for Zinchenko. If he chooses Arsenal, he will have Europa League football on offer; West Ham will also be involved in continental competition with the Europa Conference League.

Therefore, although he would be dropping down a rung from Man City, he would still be competing at a good level. And crucially, he may get the continuity he needs to make the most of his prime years.

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