Ilkay Gundogan is Going to be Sold so why not Arsenal?


It may not be the best argument ever in terms of signing a new addition, but given the fact that Ilkay Gundogan hasn’t signed an extension at Borussia Dortmund and is going to move on according to Dortmund sporting director Michael Zorc (via IBT), then why not Arsenal?

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For one, he’s only 24 years old, so he’d fit right in in terms of the ages of all of Arsenal’s youth infusion of midfielders (Wilshere – 23, Ramsey -24, Ozil – 26, Coquelin – 23). So there’s that. Then there’s the German connection between him, Mesut Ozil, Per Mertesacker and possibly Lukas Podolski, depending on where he ends up. So there’s that as well.

Reports indicate that Arsenal is already in negotiations with Ilkay Gundogan’s family, as Gundogan’s father is also his agent, but Dortmund have repeatedly claimed that no official offer has been made. The fact that no offer has been made actually makes it sound like Arsenal are the chief pursuers seeing as how Arsene Wenger has a way of keeping these things mum until they happen.

Transfermarkt lists Ilkay Gundogan’s value at 20 million euros, but he’s not going to fetch the biggest price since he’s going to leave. They’d rather ‘cash in’ on him now rather then let him go on a free transfer in a year. Arsenal could get a really good bargain given the supposed good rapport that Arsenal and Arsene Wenger have with Borussia Dortmund and Jurgen Klopp.

Although Arsenal have been (and still are) linked to a handful or two of Dortmund players, Ilkay Gundogan’s connection has actually escalated over time. He was heavily linked in January before reports of him staying in Germany surfaced. Now that he for sure isn’t staying in Germany, we may find that one of the Dortmund rumors actually comes true.

Here’s a look at how Ilkay Gundogan stacks up against Arsenal’s current crop of midfielders on the year (stats on a per 90-minute basis, provided by Squawka):

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The stats indicate that he’s right in the midst of everyone. He’s not as good defensively as Coquelin but he’s not as good offensively as Ozil or Cazorla. He’s a nice blend of the four that would provide excellent depth in an area that we may be thinning out in come the summer.

However, Arsenal are linked to Morgan Schneiderlin too, and for longer then Ilkay Gundogan even, so how does he stack up against the Frenchman? Not so well. In the same statistical categories, Gundogan only outshines Schneiderlin in chances created (via Squawka). But with Schneiderlin fetching a price in the 20+ million pound range, would it be better for Arsenal to go for the budget midfielder in Gundogan?

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Another factor to consider is injuries. While many will tell you that Ilkay Gundogan has a history of injuries, he’s only really had one. It was a serious injury that required surgery and may be having some lingering affects, but as far as injury-proneness goes, he’s no more prone to injuries than the next guy.

The depth and versatility that Ilkay Gundogan would provide would be incredibly valuable when considering that Mikel Arteta, Mathieu Flamini and Tomas Rosicky all may be on the way out. Aside from that, it’s just Jack Wilshere and Abou Diaby providing the depth (talk about injury prone). So adding Gundogan seems like a promising prospect. Now it’s just a matter of whether or not Arsene Wenger will see the value in it.

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