Defender confirms his Arsenal transfer dream and explains why he wants to join
After allowing Sead Kolasinac to re-join Schalke on loan in January, the Gunners will finish the season with Kieran Tierney as their only recognised left-back, and now a highly rated 19-year-old defender has expressed his desire to move to the club.
Arsenal are understandably in the market for a left-back this summer after finding themselves severely short in the position throughout this campaign. Sead Kolasinac will return to the club – temporarily at least – but it is still undeniably a position of weakness, especially considering Kieran Tierney’s injury record since joining the club.
It even got to a point where Mikel Arteta trialled playing Granit Xhaka, one of the club’s more senior midfielders, as left-back cover in both the Premier League and the Europa League. That surely isn’t the Spaniard’s long-term solution to the problem, and luckily, it seems as though an opportunity to solve the issue may have presented itself.
Ridvan Yilmaz, who played his part in Besiktas’ Super Lig title win this season, has commented on his ambition to move to England and play for Arsenal when speaking on TRT Spor (via Fanatik): “I want to leave Besiktas by making money. My heart is in favour of England,” he said. “I want to play for Arsenal, the Premier League team.”
Yilmaz has already made a significant impression, and his performances recently earned him a call up to Turkey’s provisional 30-man squad for the upcoming Euro 2020 Championship.
Given left-back is a position which certainly needs attention, and that Yilmaz’s age suggests he will gladly accept being behind Tierney in the pecking order for the foreseeable future, it might not be the worst option for Arteta and the board to pursue, particularly if he is given the opportunity to gain first-hand experience in a major tournament at such a young age.
What is clear however, is that a resolution needs to happen quickly because - providing the club opt to sell Kolasinac permanently - Tierney cannot be expected to continue alone for too much longer.