Arsenal star makes position request as Edu is pushed on Youri Tielemans decision
Lokonga has impressed in an advanced role in pre-season
Albert Sambi Lokonga has impressed this pre season playing in an advanced midfield role
Albert Sambi Lokonga has hinted that he’d like to permanently play in the more advanced role as a box-to-box or аttасkıпɢ midfielder rather than in defensive midfield where he was deployed last season.
It comes as Arsenal are being heavily linked with a player in the aforementioned box-to-box, or number 8, midfielder in Leicester City’s Youri Tielemans. football.london understands that Arsenal remain interested in the player, but no bid has yet gone in at this point.
It would be a signing that could hinder Lokonga’s development and game time at Arsenal, but it’s one that he seemingly is unfazed by – welcoming the competition for places – something he knew when he signed for the ɢυппeгѕ.
When asked about Arsenal being linked to Tielemans, Lokonga told the Counter Attack Podcast: “I try to not pay attention to all of that stuff. When you play for a big club, people have expectations, ‘yeah, you need to buy this player’, or, ‘this player is rubbish’, for me I just focus on myself and focus on my job.
“If I was scared of competition I would not have chosen Arsenal. Coming here I knew there would be competition, at my previous club there was competition as well so it’s part of football. I think competition can make you better.”
But with Lokonga’s impressive pre-season playing more advanced, some may feel that the Leicester City midfielder is not needed.
And Lokonga himself insinuated that this role is his preferred position, stating that he feels ‘free’ when he plays in a more advanced position.
He said: “What I want is to feel free on the pitch – I want freedom on the pitch. Then you will get the best of Sambi – you will see the real Sambi.”