Multiple reports state that Ben White will join Arsenal this summer for a fee around £50m. This is quite surprising since Arsenal have never spent big on a defender.
Shkodran Mustafi became Arsenal’s most expensive defender in history when he joined from Valencia for £36m in 2016, unfortunately he didn’t have such a good career in north London.
Ben White is one of the most highly rated defenders in English football and has been scouted by the top clubs for the last two seasons.
But is he really worth £50m? The Brighton defender has spent majority of his career in the Championship. His breakthrough campaign was the 2019-20 season where he helped Leeds gain promotion to the Premier League.
The 2020-21 season was his first season in the Premier League, making 36 appearances. £50m for a centre-back with just 36 Premier League appearances, a little bit ridiculous.
No doubt White is a talented player capable of playing in various positions, at 23 he can still develop into one of the best defenders and I’d love to see him at Arsenal but not for £50m.
Arsenal’s second most expensive defender in history is William Saliba, yet to make a competitive appearance for the club and now set for a third loan. Ben White was given a chance by Brighton after impressing on loan and now his value has skyrocketed.
What if Arsenal decided to give their very own highly rated defender a chance? After David Luiz’s departure someone needs to come in and replace him and an upgrade to Rob Holding.
In terms of priorities defenders shouldn’t be at the top, statistically only two teams conceded more goals than Arsenal. The focus should be on bringing in a central and attacking midfielder.
Arteta’s side struggled in the final third with chance creation, we would expect a big money signing instead in those positions.
Unless Arsenal have a big transfer budget Ben White shouldn’t be signed for that fee and instead the club should look at cheaper alternatives and prioritize the funds for somewhere else.
Spending a big chunk of the transfer budget on a centre-back and leaving peanuts for other priority positions will affirm that Arteta and Edu are incompetent.
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