Who is Arthur Vermeeren? The £15m Arsenal transfer target labelled the 'next Andres Iniesta'


Royal Antwerp midfielder Arthur Vermeeren is the latest player to be mooted as a possible Arsenal target ahead of the January transfer window. Mikel Arteta's side have joined the race to sign Vermeeren, according to Teamtalk, who also claim that the likes of Ajax, RB Leipzig and Borussia Dortmund also keen on the player.

The Belgian talent has established himself as one of Europe's most coveted teenagers in recent times, with Barcelona and Liverpool also said to be interested in signing him. But who exactly is the youngster and what kind of attributes would he bring to north London if he were to be signed?

football.london takes a closer look below.

Who is Vermeeren?

Aged just 18, Vermeeren is a talented central midfielder born in Lier, Belgium.

Vermeeren has come through the ranks of Antwerp's academy before making his first-team debut a little over a year ago - featuring in a UEFA Europa Conference League clash against Lillestrom SK back in August 2022. He was just 17 years old at the time.

READ MORE: Arsenal news and transfers LIVE - Smith Rowe 'meeting', huge injury boost, Vermeeren move

READ MORE: Ivan Toney transfer latest: Player wants Arsenal move, price tag revealed, Chelsea battle

What would he bring to Arsenal?

Vermeeren is a cross between a traditional holding midfielder and a box-to-box midfielder, a little similar to Arsenal club-record signing Declan Rice in that respect. The talented youngster is extremely capable in possession, always looking for a pass forward.

He is adept at progressing the ball between the lines and can be quite creative when given the chance to roam forward. In fact, he has already registered two assists in his first two UEFA Champions League appearances, setting up two goals against Shakhtar Donetsk earlier this month.

Despite being a teenager, the Belgian is already very mature in terms of his play style. He started 24 league games for Antwerp last season, making a meaningful contribution as they won their first Belgian Pro League title since 1957.

Unlike the aforementioned Rice, he isn't exactly a physical force, needing time to grow into his body and perhaps put on some muscle mass.

What has been said?

Arsenal hero Marc Overmars has even compared Vermeeren to Barcelona icons Andres Iniesta and Xavi, high praise indeed for the youngster. The Dutchman, who is currently Anterwp's director of football, told FCBN : "I do not have doubts that Vermeeren can play in the Barca.

"When I played here, can see like Xavi and Iniesta went growing... And now that see here to Vermeeren, have the same profile."

Former Tottenham Hotspur defender Toby Alderweireld, who captains Antwerp these days, is also a huge fan of his young teammate. Speaking of his compatriot, Alderweireld said, via the Sun: "He arrived in the team by force of circumstance, but since then he has learned very quickly.

"He reads the game very well, his potential is enormous. Have I seen this before? Rarely, I think."

Arsenal WhatsApp

Sign up to our Arsenal WhatsApp service and get all the latest breaking news and in-depth stories from football.london's dedicated Arsenal writers direct to your phone.

By signing up to this free service you will be the first to know the news from the Emirates Stadium as it happens.

To join our Arsenal community, all you have to do is click this link.

Adblock test (Why?)