“He would walk into the Manchester United team” – Paul Merson urges Arsenal to sign player who ‘could play for any of the top clubs’ 

Former Arsenal midfielder Paul Merson has urged the Gunners to beat Manchester United to the signing of James Ward-Prowse.

The 54-year-old wrote in his exclusive column for the Daily Star and stated his belief that the Gunners need to sign experienced players this summer.

He revealed that the Southampton captain’s experience at international level could be beneficial to Mikel Arteta’s side.

”I don’t understand why Arsenal are not pulling out all the stops to try and take James Ward-Prowse from Southampton. Arsenal need to buy experience and they would be buying an experienced England international who knows the Premier League and would make a huge difference to them.”

He added:

”Arsenal should try for him. Surely he’d be tempted. Arsenal are not a million miles away. They are one top class striker away from being contenders. He’s not a shouter or anything but he is a leader and Arsenal need leaders as well. He sets an example on the pitch. He’s an experienced player.

He also revealed that Ward Prowse does not get as much praise as he deserves and believes that he will start for any team in the league, including Manchester United.

”Arsenal don’t need to sign a lorryload of teenagers this summer. They need experience. And Ward-Prowse ticks every box. He is deadly from free kicks. Puts it on a sixpence from corners. What am I missing? Is it because he’s English and only plays for Southampton? I don’t get it.”

He also said:

”I think he’s massively underrated. He could play for any of the top clubs. He would walk into the Manchester United team. He’d be perfect for them as well.”

James Ward-Prowse has spent the entirety of his career at Southampton, making 364 appearances in all competitions for the Saints.

West Ham ‘target Southampton captain James Ward-Prowse’ as David Moyes looks to revamp his midfield trib.al/AIXNTzT

He is highly-regarded for his technical abilities and is generally considered to be the most accurate freekick taker in the Premier League.

His displays at St Mary’s have seen him gain international recognition, with 11 caps won for England since making his international bow in 2017.

Manchester United’s midfield needs augmentation more than Arsenal

Manchester United are depleted in midfield
Manchester United are depleted in midfield

Manchester United saw several first-team midfielders depart the club in the summer.

Paul Pogba, Nemanja Matic, Juan Mata and Jesse Lingaard all left Old Trafford, leaving the club’s midfield depleted.

In light of this, Erik ten Hag will prioritize strengthening the club’s midfield and the Red Devils have been strongly linked with a move for Frenkie de Jong.

James Ward-Prowse could be a cheaper alternative and the 27-year-old has the added advantage of having an intimate knowledge of the Premier League.

Arsenal, by contrast, are well-stocked in the middle of the park and recently completed Fabio Vieira’s signing from FC Porto.

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