Arsenal missed out on star similar to Xabi Alonso, former Gunner explains

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Lucas Silva has been compared to Xabi Alonso by former Arsenal loanee Julio Baptista.

Former Arsenal loanee Julio Baptista has praised new Real Madrid signing Lucas Silva, in comments to Spanish radio station Cadena Ser, reported by Football Espana.

He has compared the former Cruzeiro star to Spanish hero and current Real midfielder, Xabi Alonso. 

Silva was named by The Mirror as a top target for Arsenal in December, with the Gunners ultimately losing out to the reigning Champions League holders.

Baptista's comments and praise of his compatriot suggests his former side have missed out on a special talent.

He said: "Real Madrid have been fortunate in signing Lucas Silva. As a player he is an organiser. When he doesn’t play the team notices his absence because he is very advanced for his age.

"He’s similar to Xabi Alonso in that he has his qualities, while he also possesses a very powerful shot, which makes him dangerous."

Alonso is a player who would fit seamlessly into Arsene Wenger's style of football, and so going by Baptista's comparison alone, Lucas Silva would have been a shrewd addition.

33-year-old Julio Baptista knows about Silva's talents well, playing alongside him last season for Cruzeiro.

Silva, 21, was unveiled by Real Madrid this week, having signed for £11.5 million and signing a contract until 2020, reported The Mirror.

He may not have been the defensive midfielder Arsenal crave, but a long-term replacement for Mikel Arteta and potential star of the future, fans will have to hope he does not become a real superstar at Real and come to regret missing out on him.

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