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Why Kevin Malcuit can provide effective cover for Arsenal

When Arsenal managed to beat Chelsea 2-0 last week and keep only their fourth clean sheet in the Premier League, it came at a big cost. Right-back and key star Hector Bellerin suffered an ACL tear and was subsequently ruled out for at least the next six months.

This effectively rules the Spaniard out for the season and an early part of next, leaving Arsenal with just Stephan Lichtsteiner and Carl Jenkinson as back-up right-back options.

However, while manager Unai Emery has used Ainsley Maitland-Niles as cover, the Gunners need a bonafide right-back and someone who can replicate what Bellerin does. Lichtsteiner for all his experience is already 35 years old, and thus offers nothing in that area, which is why Arsenal have been linked with a move for Napoli star Kevin Malcuit, according to the Daily Mail.

The 27-year-old has struggled to outdo first choice Elseid Hysaj after arriving in the summer for €11million and has only made 12 appearances this season. However, his performances of late have seen him getting picked over Hysaj. This consistent game-time has allowed the right-back to showcase exactly what he brings to the table, which is what Arsenal need at the moment.

Image result for Kevin Malcuit
Kevin Malcuit

If nothing else, the 27-year old’s speed and agility would help going forward along with his crossing abilities. He is adept in helping the defence out without possession. The Frenchman averages two tackles, 2.2 interceptions and 2.7 clearances a game in the Serie A this season (Whoscored).

Given Arsenal’s frailties at the back, Malcuit could be a decent addition to their squad. He possesses the aggression to run up and down the field and impact the game. His physicality and bundle of energy would help him to settle down in the Premier League.

Read More: Arsenal should somehow find a way to bring back their talented on-loan star or their season could implode

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What could, however, be a potential roadblock in any deal is the fact that because Kevin Malcuit is performing so well for Napoli and has even taken over Elseid Hysaj’s right-back spot. Hence, there is a slight chance that Napoli might not want to sell. The Gil Azzurri are chasing Juventus in the league and are currently 10 points behind them.

While a title challenge is a far distance away, Carlo Ancelotti and company will still want to keep their best stars at the club.


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