Pitchside

Why Arsenal should sign this young star

Pitchside

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Arsenal are thought to be considering a bid for Napoli and Italy forward Lorenzo Insigne, should he perform well at this summer's World Cup.

The diminutive Italian was superb for Napoli last season, helping them finish in the top three and lift the Coppa Italia. After a good season, the rumoured fee hanging from his shoulders is £17 million and, apparently, Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger is willing to pay that if he's impressed by the Italian in Brazil over the new few weeks.

He certainly had a great season for Napoli. He scored just three goals which he'll be disappointed about but his 59 created chances was not improved on by anyone else in the squad. That's ahead of Marek Hamsik and Dries Mertens who could not match up to Insigne's superb contribution in attack in Rafael Benitez's first season in charge.

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He also grabbed six assists which is the same figure as Andrea Pirlo, who led Juventus to another Serie A title. At Napoli, only Gonzalo Higuain (7) assisted more goals for Napoli than Insigne so his chance creation was up there as the best at the club last season.

What would he bring to Arsenal though? They have a plethora of attacking midfielders in Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, Theo Walcott, Mesut Ozil, Tomas Rosicky, Lukas Podolski, Santi Cazorla and Jack Wilshere. Insigne would bring a lot to Arsenal, in all honesty.

Only Ozil (76) and Cazorla (66) created more chances than him last season so he would slot easily into their attacking set-up. With Cazorla waning and heading towards his 30s - and with Insigne only 23-years-old - the Italian could provide some big competition.

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However, Wenger turned down Cesc Fabregas because he feels that he does not need anymore attacking midfielders. In fairness, he doesn't but due to everyone's injury problems, the Gunners were down to the bare bones at one stage last season so another top class addition would not be a bad idea.

Now that he's passed up on Fabregas, targeting the younger and cheaper Insigne - who can also play as a striker - would be a good alternative.

Wenger needs a new striker and with Insigne, he has back-up to Giroud. With Walcott and Podolski, too, there are plenty of options for the Frenchman should Giroud need a rest.

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One thing the Italian certainly needs to improve is his finishing. With just three goals from 69 shots, he converted a tiny 4.3% of his chances - that's around the Roberto Soldado range from last season in the Premier League.

He has youth on his side, though, so has plenty of years yet to fix that. Playing for Arsenal would be a good move for the Italian. He is quick, clever, can create plenty of chances and is not afraid to shoot. He scored a wonderful curling effort in the Coppa Italia final to set Napoli on their way to glory and has shown throughout the past season that he can hack it in the big divisions in the big games.

£17m for Lorenzo Insigne may not be a bad idea at all for Wenger.

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