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Since the shocking announcement made by Gunners’ skipper Robin Van Persie, Arsenal has been linked with strikers from all over Europe, ranging from the likes of the in-form Robert Lewandowski to French prospect M’Baye Babacar Niang.
While there are countless exciting options for Arsene Wenger and the board to chase, the most promising rumor has been the link with Fiorentina striker Stevan Jovetic.
Despite being only 22 years of age, Jovetic has plenty of international experience both at senior and youth level, having taken the armband from Mirko Vucinic at the ripe age of 17, before making his first appearance for the recently formed Montenegrin senior national team in March of 2007.
The Viola player boasts a healthy goal return rate for someone of his age – 14 goals in 27 appearances – and impeccable technique. Some of Jovetic’s strongest attributes are his longshots – scoring 4 goals out of 20 from inside the box – , dribbling and composure on the ball.
Jovetic is a player with a great amount of confidence in himself, averaging 4.5 shots per game, and having attempted 160 dribbles last season, with a completion average of 43.1%. A great eye for goal is coupled with decent vision for a striker so young, with an average of 39.8 passes per game and 3 total assists this season.
While he’s considered by most as a centre-forward in the “Number 10” role, Jovetic is very versatile, showing ability to play as a lone striker, second striker and attacking midfielder.
The most exciting part of Jovetic’s game is his flair and creativity. Similar to players such as Zlatan Ibrahimovic, Jovetic combines his dribbling skills and powerful shots to amount a dangerous goal threat.
While his ariel capabilities aren’t often showcased, Jovetic has the potential to grow into a target man, standing a respectable 6 feet in height. Considered to be equally strong with both feet, Jovetic has the tools to play anywhere he’s required thanks to a strong, slender physique, power and grace.
While he has shown potential playing on the wing, Jovetic has issues with two very important parts of playing this position: Defensive work rate and crossing. In these weaknesses, he is similar to Theo Walcott.
His pace and trickery afford him plenty of free space, but when the time comes to cross to the back post, his intended target is rarely reached. The Viola forward also lacks defensive capability and desire, which is to be understood given his age and favoured position of centre-forward.
All in all, Stevan Jovetic would be a fantastic option to bolster the Gunners’ attacking lineup, but he, like most players his age, will require discipline and hard work to earn a starting place in one of the toughest leagues in the world.
The probability of this deal seems to have been raised, as according to the press, Fiorentina have had a season-long interest in Marouane Chamakh.
While the Moroccan initially demonstrated potency and intelligence in front of goal, he seems to have lost the confidence of Arsène Wenger and the team. Rumors of a £4m bid have surfaced, but a straight swap deal doesn’t seem likely either.
Whether a player of our own is involved or not, signing this talented 22 year old whiz would certainly give a confidence boost to the club looking to add to their now depleted goal threat.
Written by Anders Marshall
Follow me on Twitter @MarshallArsenal
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