Arsene Wenger seems to have learnt his lesson of last season as he appears to be on the verge of signing Bolton Wanderers centre-back Ryan Holding. Wenger could not win last season’s Premier League for the 12th time as Leicester City were declared champions on the last day of the season.
One area of concern for the manager is his defence which is shambolic to say the least. The North London club made several amateur defensive mistakes with most coming in central defensive position which was maimed by the likes of Laurent Koscielny, Gabriel Paulista and Per Mertesacker. This has made Arsene Wenger resolve to sign a centre-back this summer which has been the club’s achilles hill since the departures of Sol Campbell and Kolo Toure a long time ago.
Holding played 26 league games for Bolton Wanderers in the Championship last season scoring one goal and being awarded the Players Player of the Year by his fellow professionals. The English man who has played for the U-21 side can also play as a right-back and in defensive midfield as well. At 20, the player has gained much experience though this has not been in the Premier League , he therefore would benefit from a loan spell away to another club most preferably in the Premier League like that of Jack Wilshere who was sent on loan to Bolton in 2011 as this will be more beneficial to the player than playing for the Arsenal reserves. This is because the youngster needs to gain game time at present to enable him to make mistakes, learn and develop his game further.
Though not yet a finished defender, Holding is said to be sound both tactically and technically . Neil Lennon who was his former manager in Bolton had this to say about him, “Rob Holing has been a superstar for me. I think he has had real quality .
“Every game he seems to be growing in maturity and improving in performance.”
According to Football Insider, Holding is valued at £4 million but will be sold at £2.5 million if Arsenal present an official bid this summer despite the club’s relegation to League One.