Arsenal have improved since the arrival of manager Mikel Arteta in December improving their chances of qualifying for Europe once more. The Gunners have posted a record of 8W-6D-2L under the former Manchester City No. 2. Arteta has turned Arsenal into a far more difficult team defeat but there are still areas that he must address in the offseason. One area of the pitch that Arteta could upgrade is Arsenal’s midfield as the team are linked to Turkish teen starlet Orkun Kokcu.
Who is Orkun Kokcu?
The Dutch-born, Turkish under-21 international currently plays for Eredivisie club Feyenoord where he is under contract until 2023. Kokcu has bagged two goals and four assists in 22 Eredivisie matches for Feyenoord this campaign.
A product of Feyenoord’s youth system, Kokcu joined the senior side in the summer of 2018 from the club’s under-19 team, according to Transfermarkt. In 47 matches in all competitions for Feyenoord, Kokcu has tallied seven goals and 10 assists while raking up 3,412 minutes in the Eredivisie.
Arsenal have opened talks with Orkun Kokcu and will be encouraged to offload players Arteta no longer wants.
Matteo Guendouzi, Sokratis and Ainsley Maitland-Niles are under threat, while top earner Mesut Ozil could also be allowed to leave. [@SamiMokbel81_DM]
— Z (@ZRAFC) March 5, 2020
Before joining Turkey’s under-21 team, Kokcu had featured for the Netherlands at the youth level playing under-17, under-18, and under-19 international football.
Kokcu is just 19-years-old and will not hit 20 until December 2020. He would bring a youth injection to Arteta’s team which could potentially lose both Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and Alexandre Lacazette in the offseason.
Turkish teen on the radar
Arsenal are just one of the big teams around Europe with the Turkish teen on their radar. Transfermarkt values Kokcu at just over £12 million, however, reports indicate the price to pry him away from Feyenoord would be around double that figure.
Arsenal candidates to replace Mesut Ozil:
Feyenoord's Orkun Kokcu, 19. Possible £23m move.
Gent's Jonathan David, 20. Available for less than £20m.
Emilie Smith Rowe, 19. Currently on loan at Huddersfield.
— ☆ⓖ★ (@g8_afc) March 17, 2020
The purse strings will be tight at the Emirates, although Arsenal did manage to spend £138m last summer on five players. Nicolas Pepe, who has been a major flop at the Emirates, cost the club £72m alone.
Sevilla are one of the clubs interested in a potential deal for Kokcu. Meanwhile, Los Rojiblancos’ city rival Real Betis are also keen to add the midfielder. He could be a replacement for Nabil Fekir, who has been linked to Real Madrid.
Arsenal could beat Sevilla and Real Betis to Kokcu’s signature due to the Spanish sides’ lack of transfer funds. Although the Gunners are claimed to have little cash in the way of transfers, last summer’s spending shows the club have more money than believed at their disposal.
Arteta may want to upgrade the team’s midfield but could ultimately turn his attention and spending toward Barcelona defender Samuel Umtiti. The centre-back is said to be available this summer. Arteta will have plenty of players to consider and may need to be creative with spending.