ARSENAL are expected to do everything in their power to land top target Nicolo Barella from Cagliari this summer.
The Gunners have sent scouts to watch the £43m-rated midfielder in action for the third time this season when his team take on Juventus.
But there’s a number of reasons why the five-cap Italy international has attracted interest from a number of Europe’s biggest clubs.
Quick recovery of the ball
Only three more players have won more tackles than Barella’s 52 in Serie A this season.
If he loses the ball, Barella will work relentlessly until it’s back at his feet.
The 22-year-old said: “I also track back because I, like various players all over the field, recover balls.
“For me, recovering a ball is like scoring a goal. On the field I’m someone who gives everything, whether I play with Cagliari, the national team or friends.”
Unlike most midfielders, Barella can be deployed in the No10 role or used to sit in front of the back four.
He said: “At Cagliari I play as a No10 and my game has probably developed a lot. I think more about making the best moves for the team and not myself.”
Barella never dismisses his defensive duties and is usually credited with starting Cagliari’s counter attacks.
Keeps his composure
He might only be 22 years old, but he has already proved that he can withstand pressure and keep his composure.
Barella rarely seems rattled – even if the opposition are hacking at his legs as charges up the pitch.
When he’s not tracking back, the 22-year-old will be gliding up the pitch with the ball glued to his feet.
He has the ability to weave through a packed penalty area before firing a shot at goal.
With the ball at his feet, the Italian star is very similar to Juventus-bound Aaron Ramsey.
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The midfielder has only scored one goal for Cagliari this season, but he looks lethal when he lines up a volley.
Barella has the confidence to try his luck from distance and his volleys are enough to give any goalkeeper nightmares.
He scored his first goal for Italy during the Euro 2020 qualifier against Finland last month.