Premier League top-six rivals Man United, Leicester City, Tottenham and Everton were also understood to be keen on a deal for the Swedish international. It was claimed that Leipzig valued their influential creative maestro at just £16.8m back then, with his contract set to expire in 2022. (Bild h/t Leicestershire Live)
Despite widespread interest from the English powerhouses, Forsberg stayed put at Leipzig last year and was instrumental as the German outfit reached the semi-finals of the Champions League. However, with his long-term future still up in the air, the door remains open for Arsenal to reignite their interest in the player next summer.
Emil Forsberg shot to prominence with GIF Sundsvall and Malmo FF in Sweden before moving to Germany with RB Leipzig in January 2015. He helped the club secure promotion to the top-flight at the end of the 2015-16 season and has since been a bonafide witness to Leipzig’s emergence as one of the superpowers of German football.
The 29-year-old made a massive impact in his debut season in the Bundesliga back in 2016-17, finishing as the league’s highest assist-provider with 8 goals and 19 assists in 30 appearances. Forsberg hasn’t really managed to emulate those lofty standards but has continued to flourish as a key player for Leipzig over the years.
Forsberg has amassed an impressive tally of 43 goals and 55 assists in 199 appearances for Leipzig in all competitions to date. He has also enjoyed an impressive international career with Sweden, having starred in his nation’s march to the quarter-finals of the 2018 FIFA World Cup.
Arsenal have enjoyed an impressive resurrection over the past month and a half following a calamitous start to the campaign. Having struggled to find the net on a regular basis earlier in the season, the Gunners were languishing in the bottom half of the standings.
Still 9 points adrift of the top four, Arsenal have plenty of work do to if they are to challenge for a return to the Champions League. Regardless of what happens between now and the end of the season, the Gunners should have one eye on bolstering their squad with fresh faces next summer.
Bringing in some creative reinforcements should be high on the club’s agenda following the departure of Mesut Ozil in January. Arsenal roped in Martin Odegaard on loan from Real Madrid but he’s only a temporary fix.
With Willian and Nicolas Pepe failing to live up to the expectations, Arsenal have been lacking the creative edge needed to rip the opposition apart in the final third.
Despite the impressive emergence of academy sensation Emile Smith Rowe as the club’s new No.10, Emil Forsberg would still represent an excellent addition to Arteta’s squad. The 54-cap Swedish international has reached great heights during his illustrious spell at Leipzig in Germany and looks ready to embrace a bigger challenge.
Besides his obvious ability to score goals and make assists, the 29-year-old’s versatility would hand a massive boost to Arsenal’s dynamics. Forsberg has primarily been utilised as a left-winger at Leipzig but is also capable of playing in No.10 and box-to-box attacking roles in the middle.
The Swedish star has also proven his worth with some top-quality displays in the Champions League. That should further prompt Arsenal to start pursuing an interest in the attacker once again come next summer.
With Forsberg set to enter the final 12 months of his contract at the end of the season, the Gunners should look at the possibility of nabbing him for a cut-price fee in the upcoming window. That would put them in good stead to go toe-to-toe with their rivals in the Premier League.