The 20-year-old Schalke attacker is undoubtedly an exciting prospect but Arsenal know a thing or two about the German national team’s best talents already.
The Gunners have Per Mertesacker, Lukas Podolski, Mesut Ozil, youngster Thomas Eisfeld and 18-year-old Serge Gnabry on their books.
The latter has just started to make waves in the first team at the Emirates with some standout performances and with long-term injury to Theo Walcott the attacking midfielder is likely to get a better chance to prove himself in Arsene Wenger’s team.
I’m not suggesting Gnabry is currently at the same level as Draxler – he is, after all, two years the Schalke starlet’s junior, but, given time, I believe he could be well on his way there and it wouldn’t take £37 million to do it.
Let’s compare the two…
Gnabry cost Arsenal £100,000 in in 2012 and so far this term (his first real inclusion in the senior squad) he has made 6 league appearances (9 overall), scored league goal and made a total of two assists in all competitions this term. Now, that doesn’t sound like a £37 million player, I’ll admit. Yet.
Draxler so far this term has five goals (one in the Bundesliga) to his name and eight assists in 24 appearances in all competitions but, looking at his career trajectory, I’m prepared to assert that Gnabry is extremely close to the level of competitiveness Draxler was two years ago.
At youth level, for example, for Germany, Draxler scored a total of three goals before he made a step up to the senior squad in 2013 and has four goals in total for his country at all levels. Gnabry has 10 goals to his name at youth level but has yet to graduate to the senior setup.
Gnabry is currently valued around £3.5 million and Draxler was valued at £6.2 million at the same age back in 2012 but it took Draxler 89 league appearances and 33 European appearances, as well as 10 senior caps for Germany to be worth his £37 million release clause at age 20.
By that logic and trajectory, Gnabry needs another 82 league appearances, 8 European appearances, and a call up to the national team in the next year or two in order to develop to Draxler’s level.
I firmly believe, for the £37 million it would take the Gunners to bring Draxler to the Emirates, it would be well worth their wait to allow Serge Gnabry to continue his development without the added competition in attacking positions that signing Draxler would entail.
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