This midfield general could be set to emulate a north London legend…

Arsenal have enjoyed a fruitful start to their summer transfer window, having announced Kai Havertz as the first of what promises to be many new additions.

Mikel Arteta is wasting no time in ironing out his new-look squad for the upcoming campaign, seeking to get all his business done as early as possible.

However, one deal that has run on far longer than he would have liked has come through their pursuit of Declan Rice.

Such a lucrative switch was always going to be a tricky one to negotiate, and with Manchester City entering the race at one point too, the pressure ramped up significantly. Despite that, it now seems like they are set to get their man, with a £105m package agreed with West Ham United.

In an effort to offer him the perfect partner, and in turn emulate one of their legendary past captains, it seems their interest in Southampton’s Romeo Lavia remains strong, as a fine option for £50m.

Could Romeo Lavia emulate Patrick Vieira?

Having already been branded as a “special player” by journalist Dan George, his debut season in senior football stunned many with his maturity in the engine room despite being only 19 years old.

He was a combative yet classy presence for the relegated Saints, battling for every ball but then boasting the technical gifts to progress the play.

As such, his 6.80 average rating in the Premier League was largely upheld through his 86% pass accuracy, 68% dribble success rate, 2.1 tackles and 1.1 interceptions per game, via Sofascore. Only Thomas Partey for the Gunners could equal his tackling tally from that term.




His lack of experience did not affect his ability to battle with the very best, and with time he is certain to only flourish further. Especially if that future is overseen at the Emirates, under the tutelage of Arteta.

Vieira was a true Arsenal legend, playing 401 games for the club and winning plenty of silverware throughout his illustrious career. His role in leading Arsene Wenger’s 2003/04 team to an unbeaten league campaign is a feat that still remains unmatched today.

His longevity was not owed solely to his immense stature and relentless work rate, although it helped greatly, but also his touch of class to dictate the play. Lavia’s aforementioned figures suggest that the foundation is in place for the Belgium international to one day grow into a similar player, and partner Rice for the next decade.

After all, the England international has added key offensive statistics to his already well-rounded game to make him a perfectly versatile option to highlight this summer revolution.

Last term, his 7.19 average rating would have made him the Gunners’ third-best player as they pushed for the title, with his six goal contributions aided through one key pass and 2.1 tackles per game, via Sofascore.

Combining these two physical assets, who both have the requisite skillset to thrive in the modern day, could prove the catalyst for truly making the north London outfit a tangible threat to Manchester City.


About The Author

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *