Would 'the new Lukaku' be a risky striker signing for Arsenal?

Arsenal are reportedly eyeing a move for one of Belgium’s top young talents Michy Batshuayi but would the potential move be a wise idea for the club?

The 20-year-old Belgium under-21 striker certainly has impressed in the Jupiler Pro League this term with Standard Liege for whom he has scored 14 goals and made three assists so far.

The Brussels-born youngster is now reportedly on the radar of Arsene Wenger at Arsenal and hailed as ‘the new Lukaku’ in his homeland following his rise to stardom.

It has emulated Chelsea forward Romelu Lukaku who broke through the ranks at Anderlecht to sign for the Blues as an 18-year-old back in 2011.

Lukaku finished out the 2010/11 season with 20 goals in all competitions for Anderlecht and just halfway through the season, Batshuayi is very much on course to equal that tally for Standard Liege, albeit while no longer a teenager.

There are no guarantees the youngster would be able to hit the ground running in the Premier League but, even Lukaku took time to settle during his first season at Chelsea, and has led to him being loaned out twice - probably this second time erroneously.

Lukaku’s loan spell with West Brom last season saw him score 17 goals to become one of the top scorers in the English top tier and so far his loan move to Everton this season is going much the same way – he has scored 9 league goals for the Toffees in 16 appearances so far.

The question, of course, is whether or not his young compatriot possesses the same work ethic and physical prowess to make a similar impact in the Premier League, yet Batshuayi has scored 5 goals in 10 appearances for Belgium at U21 level – Lukaku managed just one goal in five at the same level.

Gunners boss Arsene Wenger has made public his desire to sign a striker in January to lessen the burden on Olivier Giroud and with Theo Walcott out for six months and Nicklas Bendtner out for the rest of January, the need to bring in a centre-forward is more desperate than expected.

The North Londoners brought in France youth star Yaya Sanogo this summer but the 20-year-old failed to make much of impression so far, somewhat due to injury this term.

Wenger suggested last week he could be tempted to bring in an unknown youngster in the template of Serge Gnabry who arrived at the Emirates in 2011 at age of 16-year-old from Stuttgart and has just broken through to strong effect in the first team.

Since breaking through to the first team at Standard Liege, Michy Batshuayi has scored 37 goals which, incidentally is more than Lukaku made during his spell in the Belgian top tier with Anderlecht, but there will still be a lot to prove for the young man if he makes his move to the Premier League.

While Standard Liege have stated they have no desire to let him go this January, Arsenal have the money to change their mind - and could well go back for him if unsuccessful in pursuit of other targets.

image: © mikehamm

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