Why Arsenal should target Dominik Szoboszlai as Aouar alternative
According to claims from Sky Italia journalist Fabrizio Romano (h/t Football London), Arsenal are monitoring the situation of highly-rated RB Salzburg midfielder Dominik Szoboszlai after failing to agree to terms for reported top target Houssem Aouar in the summer.
The reputed insider has indicated that Aouar remains the No.1 target for Mikel Arteta but Szoboszlai is very much on the club’s shortlist. The Hungarian international has been monitored by Arsenal over the past 12 months and they even made contact with the player’s representatives last summer. (h/t Football.London)
As per the report, the 19-year-old has also attracted interest from Serie A giants AC Milan and Napoli while Paris Saint-German have also been mentioned among his long list of admirers.
Dominik Szoboszlai started his professional career at Liefering in the Austrian second-tier before enjoying a breakthrough at heavyweights Red Bull Salzburg during the 2018-19 season.
The 19-year-old bagged an astonishing 12 goals and 18 assists in 40 appearances for Salzburg in all competitions last season, winning the Player of the Season award in the Austrian Bundesliga while also impressing in the group stages of the UEFA Champions League.
Szoboszlai has once again hit the ground running this term, registering 3 goals and 3 assists in 6 appearances. He represented Hungary across U-17, U-19, and U-21 age-group levels before making his senior international debut in 2019 and has since accumulated 10 caps.
Szoboszlai would be a good long-term signing for Arsenal
Arsenal ended a successful transfer window with the dramatic capture of Thomas Partey from Atletico Madrid on deadline day. Widely regarded as one of the best defensive midfielders in Europe, the Ghanaian’s arrival is expected to hand a significant boost to Mikel Arteta’s side.
Now that the Gunners have successfully addressed their issues in the midfield, they should now turn their attention to improving the quality of their supply lines. With Mesut Ozil seemingly not in the manager’s plans and Joe Willock yet to make a big impact, a new central attacking midfielder should be high on the club’s agenda in January.
Dani Ceballos’ return to North London on a second successive loan deal from Real Madrid is definitely a big positive but Arsenal would be better off scouring the market for more options regardless of what the future holds for the Spaniard.
Hungarian international Szoboszlai has already racked up some crazy numbers in terms of goals and assists in Austria while his performances in the Champions League against Napoli and Liverpool last season clearly indicate that the teenager is ready to make the step up to a more competitive league.
Besides his creativity and eye for goal, Szoboszlai has also earned rave reviews for his versatility. The 19-year-old is capable of playing as an out-and-out No.10 behind the striker, in a more withdrawn No.8 role as a box-to-box midfielder, and also out wide on the left-hand side of the pitch.
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Dominik Szoboszlai might not be the finished article just yet but there have been clear signs to suggest that the Hungarian is a special talent with loads of untapped potential. Aouar, of course, is a couple of years older and some way ahead of Szoboszlai in terms of development, but the Hungarian is very much a player in a similar mould.
All in all, Arsenal shouldn’t hesitate to follow up their interest in the 19-year-old with an official bid when the mid-season window opens.