Pundit gives verdict on Arsenal’s impending arrival, Timber

By on July 5, 2023

Former defender turned pundit Rio Ferdinand has claimed that Jurrien Timber will be a ‘good addition’ to Arsenal’s defence and Mikel Arteta might deploy the Dutchman alongside William Saliba at the back.

Despite enjoying a stellar campaign last term, the North London club failed to keep their momentum going following the injury absence of Saliba. So, it has been suggested that Arsenal have decided to sign a new defender to support the Frenchman.

Several players were linked with a move to the Emirates Stadium over the last few months but Timber has emerged as a key target. Arteta’s side initially submitted a £30m bid to sign the 22-year-old but Ajax rejected the offer as they were demanding a fee of around £50m.

However, the Eredivisie giants have eventually decided to lower their asking price and have accepted the Gunners’ final proposal of around £39m, including bonuses. The player is now set to undergo medical before the deal gets finalised over the coming days.

Speaking on his YouTube channel, Ferdinand has delivered his verdict on Arsenal’s new impending arrival and said that Timber would be a shrewd signing and he would be an improvement to what Arsenal currently have at their disposal.

Timber to Arsenal

The pundit further claims that the Netherlands international could be deployed at the heart of Arsenal’s defence along with Saliba, leaving Gabriel Magalhaes among the substitutes next season.

Ferdinand said:

“He’s quick, he can play, he’s good on the ball. He’ll be a good addition to the team. I think he’s an improvement on what they’ve got as well. I’d probably look at it and say him and Saliba might play. But I think it’s a good battle there. If Timber comes and they’ve got Saliba, Gabriel, Ben White and Timber as a four, I’d be very, very comfortable with that if I was Mikel Arteta.”

Arteta likes to deploy a left-footed centre-back on the left side of defence. So, it is unlikely that the Spanish boss will start Saliba and Timber as a defensive partnership if Gabriel and Jakub Kiwior are fit to feature.

I think Arteta may use the Netherlands international as a right-back option, using Ben White in his preferred central role, but he would also be utilised as a centre-back if needed.

Timber is a highly talented player and possesses the potential to become a world-class defender going forward so, he would be an excellent signing for Arsenal.