Julian Draxler is a name Arsenal fans are getting used to. The 20-year-old Schalke midfielder with the €45million release-clause has long been linked with a move to the Emirates Stadium, and reports this weekend claimed Arsene Wenger was prepared to spend big to get his man.
While the German side has previously acknowledged that the presence of the release-clause could see Draxler leave this summer despite their desire to keep him, the signing of Sidney Sam for a bargain €2.5million means Draxler’s departure would be tempered somewhat.
In fact, a quick look at the statistics suggests Schalke could make a €42.5million profit (by selling Draxler and bringing in Sam) and have a better player (at least currently) as a result.
Draxler has five goals and eight assists for Schalke this season, while Sam has 11 goals and seven assists for Bayer Leverkusen.
The latter is five years Draxler’s senior, but at 25 he still has years ahead of him and offers very similar things to the man so heavily linked with Arsenal.
While Sam’s strongest position is centrally, he is also comfortable coming in from either flank; Draxler, on the other hand, does most of his best work from the left.
If Schalke are preparing for the departure of their prize-asset, they have pulled off something of a masterstroke by bringing in one of the Bundesliga’s players of the season for what equates – at least in footballing terms – to peanuts.
Now it is down to Wenger to decide if Draxler is worth the considerable outlay it would take to bring him to London. More, in fact, than it took to sign Mesut Ozil.
image: © achimh