Arsenal may have struck out the last time it took on a tall, powerful Danish stirker, but that should not cause the team to pass on Andreas Cornelius this summer.
The 19-year-old FC Copenhagen centre-forward is having a breakout season and is attracting attention from England’s top clubs. Unsurprisingly, the teenager has dreams of playing in the Premeir League, with Sky Sports noting that he said the following to Danish website Bold.dk:
I think that the Premier League is the best league in the world and I would love to play there.
It would be like a dream coming true. But there is still a long way and I still have plenty to learn.
Cornelius has a fantastic goal-scoring record this season and has been a key component in helping Copenhagen take a comfortable lead atop Denmark’s top flight. He has 14 league goals in 21 appearances this season, which ties him for the highest total in the Superliga.
When a player this young produces goals at this rate, teams are sure to take notice. Arsenal is not the only club showing interest, with Sky Sports’ report noting that Manchester United is also monitoring the rising star.
The Gunners have reason to doubt that Olivier Giroud will be a long-term option at striker after he has been worryingly inconsistent this season, and the team should be exploring its options in the transfer market for new attacking talent.
Arsene Wenger has always preferred to buy younger players, and Cornelius’ age is one quality that makes him an attractive target. But he also has many other characteristics suggesting that he has the ability to be a potent goal-scorer in the Premier League.
He stands 6’4” tall and has a powerful frame. Even the most physical Premiership defenders will have trouble pushing him off the ball.
Cornelius’ height has earned him comparisons to another tall Danish striker familiar to Arsenal supporters, but there is reason to believe that the teenager will not follow along Niklas Bendtner’s career path.
Like Bendtner, Cornelius is fantastic header of the ball and packs a significant amount of power into his aerial strikes. But he also has an incredibly strong left foot and shows patience to hold the ball and play it back to his midfielder.
But Cornelius does not appear to have the same massively inflated ego as his compatriot. Even his brief quote about the Premier League shows humility, which is a quality Bendtner has not displayed during his time at the Emirates.
It is unclear what the Gunners will do with Bendtner after he returns from his loan to Juventus. He has not been a factor for the Italian side this season and it is unlikely that Wenger will have much use for him going forward.
Cornelius offers Wenger another chance to have success with a powerful Danish forward. He has all the skills Bendtner displayed, and the Gunners should give the young striker the opportunity to succeed where his fellow Dane failed.