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Arsenal and Manchester United Locked in Transfer Battle for £20m Rated Premier League Right-back

Kyle Walker-Peters, Manchester United, Arsenal

Recent reports suggest that Premier League sides Arsenal and Manchester United are vying for the signature of Southampton right-back Kyle Walker-Peters. Tottenham Hotspur are also in the race, having the option of a buy-back clause worth £30 million for their former player.

Kyle Walker-Peters had an impressive spell with the Spurs initially but then decided to move to the Saint Mary’s Stadium in 2020 due to the lack of game-time. The English full-back has been a mainstay at Southampton for the last two years. However, the club now want to cash in on the player, given there has been no progress for a fresh deal.

Kyle Walker-Peters, Manchester United, Arsenal
Image Obtained via Just Arsenal

Arsenal are ready to sell Hector Bellerin, currently a second back-up option in the right-back position with La Liga sides Villarreal and Real Betis being interested in signing the player. The North London side have replaced the Spanish defender with Takehiro Tomiyasu, with Cedric Soares playing second fiddle.

Meanwhile, ManUnited continue in their pursuit to sign more players under the Erik ten Hag rebuild, with Lisandro Martinez becoming their most recent signing. The Red Devils have issues in other positions too, and one of the positions where the team is expected to bring in a player is right-back. Aaron Wan-Bissaka has failed to provide the quality that was needed, and the team is thinking about offloading him.

According to The Sun, Manchester United and Arsenal have both expressed interest in a move for Southampton defender Kyle-Walker-Peters. Both the teams are looking to bolster their right-back position and have shortlisted the 25-year-old right-back as a potential target.

Player Profile

Kyle Walker-Peters made 32 appearances last season in the Premier League (stats via transfermarkt) for an injury-struck Southampton side and still flourished. His versatility contributed a lot to Southampton’s survival in the relegation battle as he filled in the vacant spots created due to the injuries of his teammates. The Englishman managed to score a goal and provide two assists for his teammates over the course of the 2021/22 season.

He is an attack-minded player, being involved in 8.38 offensive actions per 90 minutes. He dominated his team’s attack, averaging almost one shot per 90 minutes, as reported by Man United Analysis. The full-back constantly dribbled through the opposition defence, registering 2.1 touches per game in the penalty box.

He likes to stay high up the pitch, making him a constant threat to the opposition goal. However, despite the attacking exploits, Walker-Peters is defensively lacking in certain situations. The player was involved in 10.8 defensive actions per 90 minutes and contested 6.9 defensive duels, 1.8 aerial duels, and 2.26 loose-ball duels per 90 minutes, with a success rate of less than 30% in each of those areas.

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It is very important for a manager to get what he wants during the rebuilding phase and Mikel Arteta has so far been getting that support from the Arsenal board. The Gunners are now prioritizing signing a midfielder and a right-back, and possibly even a left-back as cover. Selling Hector Bellerin will give Arsenal some funds to make one more signing.

Takehiro Tomiyasu has proved himself in terms of quality but his injury concerns will require Arteta to add more quality to that position. They are targeting a few players, one of them being the versatile Southampton full-back, Kyle Walker-Peters. The 25-year-old is on the radar of many Premier League clubs and could be on the move in this window only.

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