Could Max Aarons complete Arsenal defence rebuild?
Mikel Arteta‘s defence is starting to come together with Arsenal completing the signing of Brazilian Gabriel Magalhaes and the return of William Saliba from his loan at Saint-Étienne. Right-back appears to be the last spot to fill, with Hector Bellerin linked with a move to PSG. Could Max Aarons be the missing piece?
Bellerin’s career has been an up and down one, bursting onto the scene with dazzling displays in the Champions League under Arsene Wenger but through a combination of poor form and injuries has failed to live up to his promising early career prospects.
This has not deterred French giants Paris Saint Germain, who are rumoured to be looking to secure the Spaniard’s signature, opening a spot at right-back in the Arsenal defence and Max Aarons could be the perfect signing to complete Arteta’s continued rebuild.
Aarons is an England U-21 international and impressed onlookers with some lively displays for Norwich’s ultimately doomed one-season stay in the Premier League.
In a similar mould to Bellerin, Aarons loves to get forward and support the attack. The fullback has an excellent engine and at the first sign he can progress into an attacking area he will take it. For Norwich, he has linked with Emiliano Buendia, who uses the constant overlap of the defender to play further inside and support striker Teemu Pukki.
When in attacking positions, the full-back has the ability to deliver a wide variety of crosses and passes to create shooting opportunities from cutbacks to the penalty spot to low driven crosses.. Arsenal thrive on cutbacks, with the side always looking to get their wide players (wingers or fullbacks) in behind the opposition where they can play the ball back to oncoming players.
In the league last year the Englishman only registered 1 assist (he added 6 in the championship the year prior) but was involved in 54 shot creation actions and with players like Aubameyang potentially on the end of his crosses, his assist total would improve dramatically.
Not just content with attacking, Aarons is a diligent defender and good distributor of the ball. When defending, he utilises his pace to recover from passes in behind his slower centre-backs or to catch attackers breaking forward.
To date the defender has already clocked up 93 league appearances by the age of 20 and has all the attributes to be a real star at full back for both club and country.
Where he plays his football remains to be seen with Bayern Munich also registering an interest but whichever club he decides to play for, they will be acquiring an exciting talent.
Would you like to see Aarons take over from Bellerin?