“We need to invest the cash we have if we’re going to win the league!”, “Ozil needs to have world-class players alongside him!” – as it turns out, the latest player valuation report suggests Arsenal fans have had the answer to their prayers quietly working his way through the ranks all along.
According to statistical data compiled by the CIES Football Observatory, Arsenal star Hector Bellerin is the most valuable defender in world football – a fact that fans of the Gunners will no doubt adapt into a chant soon enough.
The Swiss research group take into account age, performances, contract length and experience in addition to other factors to produce their transfer values, which they claim are 80 per cent accurate. The Spanish right-back has stamped his mark on the Premier League this season, voted as the full-back for the Professional Footballers’ Association Team of the Year 2015/16.
The CIES suggest that Arsenal should demand at least £43.1million if they were ever to sell Bellerin – for reference, fan favourite Mesut Ozil is valued at £38 million… let that soak in.
Bellerin has surpassed some of football’s biggest names on his rise to the title of Worlds Most Expensive Defender: Real Madrid’s Raphael Varane, currently out through injury doesn’t come close to Arsenal’s right-back, the next highest-valued defender is Bayern Munich star David Alaba at £37.5m.
Arsenal locked down the talented youngster on a four-year deal last summer and seem to have fought off the interests of Bellerin’s former club Barcelona (for now), following a worrying period after Dani Alves announced his departure from the Camp Nou. The Gunners have always boasted a strong financial position and can now add Bellerin’s astronomical value to their worth.
As a late addition to Spain’s Euro 2016 squad, Bellerin will be prominently featured in the summer transfer shop window. Now that Arsenal finally have the world class asset they’ve desperately craved, will they manage to hold onto him when the European heavyweights express an interest?
For perhaps the first time in their recent history, Arsenal may actually hold on to their developed talent. With Barcelona seemingly giving up the chase for the Spainiard, Bellerin has reiterated how happy he is in London, having moved to the capital aged 17:
“I say every year that England is my home now.
“I’ve lived there for many years; my family and my girlfriend are there. I’m very happy there so I don’t see myself anywhere other than Arsenal.”
So rest easy Arsenal fans – not only do you have the worlds most valuable defender at your disposal, he’s not going to be leaving for Manchester City or Barcelona any time soon.