Friday 26 August 2016 14:31, UK
Lucas Perez's achievements at Deportivo La Coruna mean Arsenal are on the verge of completing a top signing, according to Guillem Balague.
A frustrating summer of transfer activity for the north London club looks set to reach an encouraging conclusion, with the Gunners closing in on the signing of Perez, and Valencia defender Shkodran Mustafi.
Having missed out on primary transfer target Alexandre Lacazette due to Lyon's reluctance to sell for less than €55m, Arsene Wenger has switched his attention to 27-year-old Perez.
And Balague insists the Deportivo striker, who has had spells at Dynamo Kyiv and PAOK, would be a valued addition to Wenger's squad
"Someone who scores 17 goals in La Liga should be considered a top signing, especially when you consider Perez did that at Deportivo," Sky Sports' Spanish football expert told his weekly Q&A.
"He's fast, has a powerful left-footed shot, he's clever and has been abroad already in Ukraine and Greece.
"That experience makes him different to other Spanish strikers that struggled in the Premier League in the past.
"He can play as a number nine or, more likely, on the right-hand side of attack."
Having seen Jamie Vardy turn down the chance to move to the Emirates, and Lyon play hard-ball over Lacazette, Wenger's pursuit of Perez has been labelled as a panic buy.
Arsenal have been following Lucas Perez for a year. He should be considered as a top signing, especially after what he's done at Deportivo.
But, according to Balague, Perez's goalscoring exploits perked Arsenal's interest way before their attempt to sign Lacazette failed.
"It's clear Arsenal wanted Lacazette as their main striker, but when Lyon asked for €55m they looked somewhere else," he added. "They have been following Perez for a year."