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12 goals; 3 assists: Reported Arsenal target Paulo Dybala a must-buy this summer

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Amid speculation linking Palermo's Paulo Dybala with a move to Arsenal, we assess the stats.

According to The Daily Mail, Arsenal are understood to have made an opening offer for Palermo striker Paulo Dybala and are the player's preference should he move to the Premier League.

Dybala's 12 goals in 27 games this season are also said to have caught the attention of Chelsea and Manchester City, as well as Italian league leaders Juventus. The Argentine youngster is hot property across Europe, and it is clear to see why.

Talking to Italian station Radio Marte, Palermo Club President Mauro Zamparini said: “Dybala would prefer to stay in Italy, but among the English clubs Arsenal is the first choice of the boy for the way he plays the team coached by (Arsene) Wenger.”

Dybala would represent a significant coup for the Gunners, not least because of the clubs they will have beaten to secure his signature.

He has emerged as one of the bright sparks of the current Serie A campaign, with his efforts seeing him ranked sixth in the domestic scoring charts, alongside a number of highly-respected names.

Although the comparisons to Olivier Giroud will undoubtedly be made – Dybala would have to compete with the Frenchman for a starting place at the Emirates – the duo are very different players.

2014/15 Season Statistics  TeamAppearancesMinutes PlayedGoals ScoredGoals Assisted
Paulo Dybala Palermo 27 2,328 12 7
Olivier Giroud Arsenal 19 1,255 13 3

As such, Dybala’s arrival would provide Wenger with a very different string to his Arsenal bow. Where Giroud can rely on his physical ability and aerial prowess, the youngster’s game is more roundly based on dribbling and movement.

The statistics reflect this notion: Giroud has recorded an average of 3.79 successful headers per appearance, to Dybala’s 0.48, whereas the former has completed just 0.26 dribbles per game, compared to the latter's 2.56.

In terms of their respective attacking output, there’s relatively little to split the duo. Giroud has scored 0.68 goals per game, with an average shot accuracy of 54%, while Dybala’s has managed 0.44 successful strikes per match – 47% shot accuracy.

However, the Argentine youngster holds the upper hand when it comes to his creative prowess. Having fashioned 42 chances in 27 appearances this term, compared to Giroud’s 22 in 19, he emerges superior once again.

At present, Giroud seems the ideal player to lead the line for the Gunners, but Dybala could prove to be a far more efficient option. Indeed, his quality in possession could prove a deal-breaker

The Palermo forward has completed 82% of his attempted passes this term, with Giroud finding success in just 67% of his efforts to find a teammate. This is a significant disparity, especially when considering the way Wenger instructs his side to play.

At 21 years of age, Dybala still faces a tremendous battle when it comes to establishing himself as a household name at one of Europe’s elite clubs, but he will find few managers more equipped than Arsene Wenger to help him realise his potential.

For a reported £30 million, the Argentine would represent a significant outlay. Nonetheless, the statistics suggest he has what it takes to succeed at the highest level.

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