Age: 24 years old (08-01-1988)
Height: 180 cm
Weight: 71 kg
Total appearances: Started in 38. Of the 11 as substitutes, he made 2 substitute appearances for Spain.
Scored 15 goals in all competitions this past season, including 7 in La Liga from 36 appearances. In the UEFA Europa League, where he seemed to enjoy his best goal-scoring form, he hit the back of the net 6 times in 9 games.
He got only one goal for Atletico in the Spanish Cup (Copa del Rey) in 2 games and also scored for Spain after coming on as a substitute for Roberto Soldado against Serbia. He also won a penalty in that match, as Spain went on to win 2-0 as he made a huge impact from the bench.
Can play anywhere in attack
Likes to dribble
Good in the air
Likes to play short passes
With the transfer window already in full swing and with Robin van Persie still non-committal to Arsenal for next season, Arsene Wenger has moved quickly in this window to add reinforcements in case the inspirational skipper, who has had a forgettable Euro tournament, might decide he wants to leave and join the blue half of Manchester, or go to Juventus and lead the line for the Serie A champions.
The early signings of Lukas Podolski(from Koln) and Olivier Giroud (from Montpellier) are a clear sign he has learnt his lessons from last season’s late panic buys. Rumours are that Arsene Wenger is also looking at young Atletico forward Adrian Lopez whom, according to AS in Spain, the Gunners are prepared to offer around €12 million for the highly rated striker, but the problem is his release clause stands at €18 million.
Adrian only joined Atletico Madrid last season as a free agent after Deportivo La Caruna was relegated to the second division. He signed a 4 year contract to the club and has formed a lethal partnership with strike partner Rodamel Falcao.
Adrian may be best remembered for the Uefa European under 21 Championship that Spain won, leading the line playing alongside the likes of Juan Mata (Chelsea), Thiago Alcantara (Barcelona), Javi Martinez (Athletic Bilbao), David De Gea (Manchester United). He was the tournament’s top goal scorer with 5 goals as well and was voted into the team of the tournament.
Where he might play
Now with the additions of Podolski and Giroud to the Arsenal attack, I’ll look at where he might play if he were to be signed by Arsenal, with the assumption that Robin van Persie will leave as I don’t see Arsene Wenger signing him unless the captain leaves.
If that’s the case, then we have possibility of seeing the Arsenal line up in their traditional 4-3-3 consisting of :
Adrian may be used to give Walcott a challenge for his place and would bring a different threat to that of Walcott, and can also be shifted across to play on the left if Podolski is injured or is not performing.
Although it would give Wenger headaches on who to start, it’s a headache all the top managers have and competition for places always brings the best out of players.
Written by Thapelo Macloed
Follow me on Twitter @offside_soccer
Published with permission from O-Posts.