Real Valladolid right-back Ivan Fresneda has confessed he has been impressed by Mikel Arteta’s work at Arsenal this season.
The 18-year-old has enjoyed a breakout season which yielded interest from both Arsenal and Borussia Dortmund during the January transfer window, and there are expected to be plenty of additional suitors in the summer.
Whether Arsenal reignite their interest or not remains to be seen – Takehiro Tomiyasu’s injury could play a deciding factor – but Fresneda has added fuel to the fire by revealing his admiration for Arteta.
“I like Arteta a lot because I think he’s a great coach; I follow the European leagues and I think the work he’s doing with his club is fantastic,” Fresneda told The Athletic.
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Asked for his preferred style of play, Fresneda stressed that he favours his current setup at Valladolid but could not avoid similarities to Arsenal’s tactics with his response.
“I love the style we try, to press high, to have the ball, to look for space, and to attack,” he added. “But sometimes we have to suffer because the league is difficult.”
Arsenal are set to be active in the summer transfer market after a season which has significantly exceeded expectations. Central midfield is a key target area, with the likes of West Ham’s Declan Rice and Brighton’s Moises Caicedo known to be targets.
The Gunners are also considering their options at right-back where, alongside Fresneda, Bayern Munich’s Noussair Mazraoui has been watched recently.
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