The transfer window is open and Premier League clubs with their new improved TV deal money are shelling out more than ever before. There is an acute shortage of world class strikers and strikers are being sold at astronomical, inflated prices which has made the market more competitive.
Premier League giants Arsenal are in search of a new striker and FC Toulouse forward Wissam Ben Yedder is reportedly the latest player to make the shortlist. The French forward has had a prolific season with Toulouse having scored 23 goals and 5 assists in 41 games for Toulouse last season. After such performances, getting linked to big name Premier League outfits is pretty much natural. Also, given the price inflation of the transfer market, coupled with the shortage of strikers and the new TV deal in England, FC Toulouse are not expected to let go of his services for a small sum.
Wissam Ben Yedder was born in Sarcelles, France on 12th August 1990 and is of Tunisian descent. The diminutive striker, nicknamed "Benyebut", began his career at associations football club UJA Alfortville in 2009. He moved on to FC Toulouse next season where he made his professional debut as a substitute on 16 October 2010 in a 0-2 home loss to Paris St. Germain.
He made 13 appearances in his first two seasons which were all substitute appearances, and scored his first goal for Toulouse on 21 April 2012, after replacing Portuguese midfielder Paulo Machado, he equalised in what was a 2–1 loss at Evian.
On 10 August 2012, the first match of the 2012-13 Ligue 1 season, he was substituted on at half-time for central midfielder Pantxi Sirieix and scored the equaliser for a 1–1 draw at defending champions and local rivals Montpellier. In the reverse fixture, the last match of the season on 26 May 2013, he scored both goals in a 2-0 win over Montpellier.
A striker on the rise, the 5'7" Frenchman is known for his finishing abilities. He is a good finisher who loves to play through balls and make key passes. He likes to play short passes and plays the ground ball often. He is someone who doesn't dive into tackles and isn't among the most physical players, though he is very pacy and can make the killer pass at times.
Wissam Ben Yedder has scored hat-tricks for FC Toulouse, the first one coming in a 5-1 win over Sochaux at home on 30th November 2013. He then scored a penalty in a 3-3 draw against minnows Caen, but his scoring streak didn't end there as he reached the milestone of 50 goals for Toulouse in a 1-1 home draw against Lille on 19th December 2015.
Wissam Ben Yedder has been having decent Ligue 1 campaigns since 2012 having scored 15, 16, 14, and 17 goals in the seasons to follow. A striker of more or less consistency, Wissam Ben Yedder averages 2.7 shots per game and can also play the role of a secondary striker and a bit deeper in the central attacking midfield. He has an average pass percentage of 72.8% and has won about 0.6 aerial duels per game last season. Yedder has made 174 appearances for the French side scoring 71 times and assisting a further 21 in the process across all competitions.
Despite being a striker, he has a major flaw in failing offside traps as his positional awareness with respect to the defensive line of the opponents is pretty poor and has been caught offside many a time. His short height also means that he is very weak in the air and his overall defensive contribution is very poor.
Wissam Ben Yedder has represented the France U21s 3 times in 2012 and has also played for France in the futsal format twice. He's had a prolific season with Toulouse and this has given him a golden opportunity to move to the next level to prove his mettle. He's got loads of room for improvement and Arsene Wenger knows how to bring out the best from his strikers.
Under the guidance of an experienced manager like Arsene Wenger at Arsenal would be the best possible step he can have to give his career a major fillip. A better playing environment, better coaches, training facilities and more importantly, the chance of a much better pay package can be too tempting for Wissam Ben Yedder and may be enough to lure him to ply his trade in the Premier League with Arsenal.Published 28 Jul 2016, 17:40 IST