Adrian Lopez has been a name that’s been thrown around in the media and been linked with Arsenal (claiming him as their number 1 target for the winter transfer window) as of late. Arsenal scout many talents around the world largely due to its extensive scouting network but is Adrian the correct transfer target for Arsenal? Let’s take an in depth look at the player from Atletico Madrid:
Contrary to popular belief that Adrian is a striker, he is actually a winger. This is where you bring “well he is a striker though!” nope not anymore. When Atletico Madrid had gotten the 24 year old from Deportivo on a free transfer where he was a striker at the time, (as he was with Oviedo where he started his career) many people believed he would be a back up to Falcao but it was completely the opposite and Madrid moved him to the wings. The move surprised people but it paid off with absolute dividends as he became a key player right away. Many people believed he was the signing of the season for Atletico as he drove many key assists and goals from a wide position with his ability to create space for attacks. So that’s him in a heart beat, a very good winger who can play up front given the opportunity as well but is this what Arsenal need? When we look at wingers we usually have to look at his defensive attributes and his ability to keep the ball and it has not been all bright news from Adrian this season:
|Pass Success %||–||76.5|
|Accurate Long Balls||4/4||0.6|
|Accurate Through Balls||1/1||0.5|
Adrian is one of the players that has been performing poorly as of late and has been seeing the bench due to his ineffective play. It has come to the point where he has to rely on coming off the bench to prove his worth(he hasn’t been doing that too effectively either). Coming off a great season many people expected Adrian to shine bright this season as well but his poor start coupled with the coach still trying to find the position to compliment the tactical style Atletico play in, has meant its all been a bit haywire for the 24 year old at the moment. Of course when talking about Arsenal many people believe Arsene Wenger is the best at bringing the best out of a player especially when they’re performing badly but at this moment (taking into consideration what the media is saying) should Adrian be a player at the top of our list in the transfer market? A player who needs to rediscover not only his best form but his positional sense as a striker? I’d think if Arsenal were looking for a striker we’d be looking for a striker who’s already known for his positional sense and focused more towards creating an impact for us (almost like a Gervinho-type that is an actual striker). Either way maybe Adrian is a long term target for Arsenal but the thoughts of him being a target in the upcoming transfer window may just be a pipe dream made up by the media (especially if you consider a team like Arsenal who’s bad at set pieces, mixing in Adrian’s defensive abilities would be a recipe for disaster). The player himself is still a work in progress so this move for me would be just media hype move for now.
*stats provided by whoscored.com