Why Arsenal fans should be excited about ‘outstanding’ transfer target Ceballos

Spain's Dani Ceballos during the Nations League match at Benito Villamarin Stadium, Seville. Picture

Spain's Dani Ceballos during the Nations League match at Benito Villamarin Stadium, Seville. Picture: Nick Potts/PA - Credit: PA Archive/PA Images

Arsenal are close to signing Real Madrid mifielder Dani Ceballos, but what can the Gunners expect from the Spaniard? Islington Gazette Arsenal reporter Dan Mountney spoke to ESPN’s Spanish football expert David Cartlidge to get the lowdown on the ‘extremely gifted’ 22-year-old.

Spain's Dani Ceballos holds off England's Kieran Trippier during the Nations League match at Benito

Spain's Dani Ceballos holds off England's Kieran Trippier during the Nations League match at Benito Villamarin Stadium, Seville. Picture: Nick Potts/PA - Credit: PA Archive/PA Images

What are his strengths and weaknesses?

His main strengths are his ability to control a game, passing and dribbling. He likes to buzz around midfield, always shows a determination to be on the ball, and he simply refuses to hide in games. In terms of weaknesses, he simply hasn't had enough game time recently. He maybe should be further along in terms of his progression and perhaps be more mature.

Can you explain a bit about his career history?

Spain's Dani Ceballos during the Nations League match at Benito Villamarin Stadium, Seville. Picture

Spain's Dani Ceballos during the Nations League match at Benito Villamarin Stadium, Seville. Picture: Nick Potts/PA - Credit: PA Archive/PA Images

He started out at Real Betis coming through their academy and was highly rated almost instantly. He went through the various ranks and became a core part of the first-team at a very young age. Most impressive was how he helped the club achieve promotion with a string of incredible performances in the Segunda division. Rather than stay with the club off the back of a fine Euro Under-21 tournament in 2017 - where he was named player of the tournament - he joined Real Madrid. Ultimately it hasn't worked out though.


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Why haven't things worked out for him at Real Madrid?

There are simply too many players ahead of him, a hierarchy of sorts. There's Luka Modric and Toni Kroos, these are elite players that have had a winning run. It's hard to displace them.

Wales' Aaron Ramsey (left) and Spain's Dani Ceballos battle for the ball during the International Fr

Wales' Aaron Ramsey (left) and Spain's Dani Ceballos battle for the ball during the International Friendly match at the Principality Stadium, Cardiff. Picture: Nick Potts/PA - Credit: PA Archive/PA Images

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Could he be a perfect replacement for Aaron Ramsey?

Perfect, not really. They're different players in several regards and Ramsey is certainly more affluent driving forward, supporting the attack. Ceballos is happier deeper, sitting and controlling.

Do you think he will do well for Arsenal?

He's an outstanding player, so yes. A typical adaptation period to the Premier League would be required, getting used to the speed and physicality of it, but he would be fine eventually.

Should Arsenal fans be getting excited about this deal?

Of course. Ceballos can bring a lot to the team and is extremely gifted.

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