Football

Abraham would ‘fit the bill’ at Arsenal but Winterburn warns against Lacazette sale


The Gunners have been linked with a raid on London rivals Chelsea for the England international striker

Tammy Abraham would “fit the bill” for Arsenal says Nigel Winterburn, but the Gunners have been warned against selling Alexandre Lacazette without having an “upgrade” lined up.

The Chelsea and England international striker could tick that box, with Mikel Arteta said to be among those mulling over a transfer raid on their London rivals.

Abraham is a proven Premier League performer and looks to be on the market this summer after slipping down the pecking order at Stamford Bridge under Thomas Tuchel.

What has been said?

Asked to pick out an ideal striker signing for Arsenal, former Gunners defender Winterburn – speaking in association with GentingBet – told Goal: “Is Robert Lewandowski an option! 

“Arsenal have been linked with Tammy Abraham from Chelsea. He certainly would fit the bill of recent Arsenal signings, young with a point to prove. People will question his consistency but what you want is for these young players to get a run in the team. 

“Is he going to get a run in a team if Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang is playing well? Probably not unless Aubameyang can be switched to the left-hand side – although you then need to leave out either Nicolas Pepe or Bukayo Saka.

“With Abraham, there’s potential there and development for a young, young player. So, I think it’s an option that Arsenal, although with Alexandre Lacazette being linked with a move away, it could be just a name that has been thrown into a hat.”

Will Lacazette leave Arsenal?

Alexandre Lacazette Arsenal 2021-22

Space for another goalscorer at Emirates Stadium would open up if France international Lacazette were to leave, with the 30-year-old yet to sign a contract extension beyond the summer of 2022.

Exit talk comes as no surprise, but Winterburn is wary of allowing a proven performer – one with 65 goals for the club – to leave before a suitable replacement has been acquired.

He added: “Arsenal shouldn’t sell Lacazette unless they’ve got an upgrade in place. I wouldn’t let him go until we have secured another striker. I’ve said that all along.  

“Lacazette is a different striker to anything Arsenal have at the club.  When he’s in top form, he holds the ball up well, his link-up play is good. 

“I suppose his strike rate is not the very, very best of what you want, but then we are not at the very, very top of the league either at the moment as well.  

“So personally, at the moment, I don’t want to see him go, unless we’ve got someone coming in that’s going to excite me. 

“I wouldn’t let him go and then we haven’t got anybody else to bring in. For me, that’s just way too risky.”

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