According to the reliable DiMarzio, Arsenal are set to sign 24-year-old Barcelona midfielder Denis Suarez in the January window, as Unai Emery seeks reinforcement in midfield.
One of the most promising things about Arsenal’s appointment of Unai Emery as manager is that he has managed many good European clubs in the past, meaning his connections are deep into the roots of many footballing nations. This allows Emery to bring players that he had previously managed to his current club in a more straightforward process than usual. It seems that this method has allowed Arsenal to be the front-runners for Barcelona midfielder Denis Suarez, who worked under Unai Emery at Sevilla when he was on loan in 2014-15.
Despite having played for both Manchester City and Barcelona, Suarez has likely been attempting to punch too far above his weight, as he failed to make any impact whatsoever at either club. After just 2 starts and 6 total appearances all season, it seems that Barcelona are ready to cut their losses with this one.
Sky in Italy: Arsenal close to deal for Barcelona midfielder Denis Suarez. Roma and AC Milan also interested. Unai Emery knows Suarez from his time at Sevilla
— Kaveh Solhekol (@SkyKaveh) January 4, 2019
It’s likely that Suarez isn’t good enough to play more than a rotation role for Arsenal, but they could use the depth regardless.
In a modern footballing world where pressing is the new black, many of the top teams require a plethora of midfield options. The position requires plenty of intensity & stamina after all. Top clubs like Liverpool, Barcelona, Manchester City, and many others have 5 or 6 midfielders in their squad that rotate and cover for each other whenever necessary.
Arsenal’s current midfield options include the 3 favourites – Lucas Torreira, Granit Xhaka, and Matteo Guendouzi – along with 3 outsiders – Mohamed Elneny, Ainsley Maitland-Niles, and Aaron Ramsey. Despite this being 6 options, Maitland-Niles has been playing solely in the wide positions this season while Ramsey has been deployed mostly in the front 3, leaving just the 4 options for Unai Emery.
This is where Denis Suarez would come in. He isn’t a Ramsey replacement, since the Welshman seems to be staying for the remainder of the season, but he is a good rotation option for Arsenal should Xhaka, Torreira, or Guendouzi require a rest. Especially for Guendouzi and Torreira, who are both in their first season in England and are likely struggling with the heavy workload over the holidays, this could result in a sigh of relief.
Let’s get this straight though – Denis Suarez would not be a particularly impressive signing nor one that shows great intent, as he has been a perennial underachiever. What he would be though, is a decent signing that will help Arsenal’s squad depth in the long run.