Guillem Balague has insisted that Arsenal are signing a ‘top player’ in Deportivo La Coruna forward Lucas Perez as he nears a deal to move to England.
It’s been a frustrating summer for the Premier League giants, but they appear to be closing in on a double swoop for Perez and Valencia defender Shkodran Mustafi, according to Sky Sports.
Balague has focused on Perez this week and has given his verdict on the signing from an Arsenal perspective as Wenger finally looks to address a problem area in his squad.
“Someone who scores 17 goals in La Liga should be considered a top signing, especially when you consider Perez did that at Deportivo,” he said in a Q&A.
“He’s fast, has a powerful left-footed shot, he’s clever and has been abroad already in Ukraine and Greece.
“That experience makes him different to other Spanish strikers that struggled in the Premier League in the past. He can play as a number nine or, more likely, on the right-hand side of attack.”
Balague went on to add that Lyon striker Alexandre Lacazette was undoubtedly the top target for Arsene Wenger, but when the Ligue 1 side asked for €55m for the French international, it signalled the end of Arsenal’s pursuit and in turn they looked elsewhere.
“It’s clear Arsenal wanted Lacazette as their main striker, but when Lyon asked for €55m they looked somewhere else,” he added. “They have been following Perez for a year.”
At 27 years of age, Perez will be expected to make an immediate impact at the Emirates, provided that a deal is completed, and he will be tasked with adding a new dynamic to the Arsenal attack but also delivering goals consistently too.
While he isn’t the signing that Arsenal fans were probably hoping for, Balague seems convinced that it’s a good piece of business and not a ‘panic buy’ as the club have been monitoring him for some time, but it remains to be seen as to whether or not the Spaniard will deliver for the Gunners moving forward.