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Who is Arda Guler? The 'Turkish Lionel Messi' linked with Arsenal and Tottenham

Ryan Smart

| Last updated 

Who is Arda Guler? The 'Turkish Lionel Messi' linked with Arsenal and Tottenham

Arsenal and Tottenham have both been linked with a move for Fenerbahce wonderkid Arda Guler this summer.

The attacking midfielder, who is already a Turkey international at the age of 18, is predicted to achieve big things in world football if he can reach his potential.

And with Gunners boss Mikel Arteta, in particular, looking to add quality to his midfield, Guler could provide an extra element of dynamism to the Arsenal side next season.

Let's take a further look at the midfielder in detail.


Who is Arda Guler?

Arda Guler came through the youth system at Fenerbahce, and broke through into the first team last season.

He scored three goals and provided three assists in 12 Turkish Super Lig appearances at the age of 17, and made his debuts in both the Europa League and Europa Conference League.

A versatile attacking midfielder, Guler can play either in a central or right-sided role, and can also operate in a deeper position as a deep-lying option.


It is in central midfield where he has featured most often this season as a starter, as per WhoScored - and his statistics this season have certainly been notable.

How has he played this season?

Guler has played 19 times this season in the league, scoring four goals. He netted his first senior brace during a 3-3 draw against Istanbulspor in March.

The wonderkid has also laid on three goals for his team-mates, including an assist in the 2-0 win over Antalyaspor that has all but secured second place in the table for Fenerbahce.


He has completed 2.9 key passes per game this season (via WhoScored) - a tally bettered by only five other players in the Turkish top division.

In addition, he has completed an average of two successful dribbles per game, with only team-mate Emre Mor recording a higher amount. His average rating for the season (7.32) is the fourth-highest of any active player in the division.

What's been said about him?

Guler has earned rave reviews from team-mates and opposition managers this season for his performances, and is rated as one of the brightest young talents in world football. He has been referred to as the 'Turkish Lionel Messi' (via


And former Arsenal and Fenerbahce star Mesut Ozil, who played alongside Guler for the Turkish club, made his thoughts clear on the 18-year-old: "Quality. You will be a world star."

He has also been praised by Italy, Juventus and AC Milan icon Andrea Pirlo, who was in charge of Fatih Karagumruk this season prior to his departure earlier this month.

Guler grabbed a decisive assist in Fenerbahce's 2-1 away win over Pirlo's side in April.



The previous month, the Italian admitted to Hurriyet: "Arda Guler is a very talented player. He has the potential to play anywhere in the world. He has quality, he can read the game well, and he has great technique. If he keeps developing his game, there is no limit to his potential."

Why might Arsenal and Tottenham be interested?

At 18 years of age, Guler can clearly make his mark on world football in a big way if he keeps on improving.

His versatility, despite his relative lack of inexperience, is also a big plus, with Guler showing that he is able to dictate play from deeper roles while still playing passes into the final third to cut through defences.

He would add an extra dimension to the midfields of both Arsenal and Tottenham, especially with the former fighting battles in both the Premier League and Champions League next season.

What's the latest?

According to Turkish-Football's Emre Sarigul, Arsenal have contacted the player's family, who act as his representatives, over a possible move this summer.

The player is said to be keen to test himself in a major European league, and could be enticed by Champions League football at the Emirates Stadium.

Football Insider, meanwhile, claimed in May that Newcastle were interested in signing the 18-year-old, with Spurs also said to be keen.

Featured Image Credit: Alamy / AP Photo/Francisco Seco / Gonzales Photo/Alamy Live News

Topics: Arsenal, Tottenham Hotspur, Fenerbahce, Turkish Super Lig, Premier League, Transfers

Ryan Smart
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