Paul Merson urges Arsenal to sign James Ward-Prowse from Southampton

Paul Merson wants to see Arsenal complete a deal to sign James Ward-Prowse from Southampton this summer

Paul Merson
Arsenal legend Paul Merson (Photo: Sky Sports)

Paul Merson has urged Arsenal to “pull out all the stops” to sign James Ward-Prowse from Southampton this summer.

The Gunners are believed to be on the lookout for a number of new signings ahead of the start of the 2022-23 season despite having already completed deals to land Marquinhos and Fabio Vieira.

Mikel Arteta is looking to bolster his squad with some fresh talent ahead of the new campaign, as the Spaniard looks to guide the Gunners to a top-four finish next term.

England midfielder Ward-Prowse was in good form for Southampton last season as he scored 10 goals and made five assists in 36 Premier League games to help the Saints to finish in 15th place in the table.

The 27-year-old has been linked with a move to West Ham United this summer – but Merson has warned the Gunners that they cannot allow the midfielder to move to the Hammers, saying that Arsenal should be going all out to try and bring him to The Emirates.

Writing in his column for The Daily Star, Merson said: “Arsenal cannot allow West Ham to buy James Ward-Prowse. I think he is a great signing for whoever gets him.

“I think he is one of the best passers of the ball in England. Him and Trent Alexander-Arnold see things few other English players do and they can spray it around the pitch because they have such a good range of passing.

“I don’t understand why Arsenal are not pulling out all the stops to try and take James Ward-Prowse from Southampton.

“Arsenal need to buy experience and they would be buying an experienced England international who knows the Premier League and would make a huge difference to them.

“They are crying out for a player who can spray the ball around from the middle of the pitch. They have plenty who can play nice, one-touch, tippy-tappy stuff but no-one who can switch the play or play a killer ball over the top.”

Ward-Prowse is a product of the Southampton youth system and made his first-team debut for the south coast club back in 2011 when he was just 16 years old.

He has scored a total of 44 goals in 364 games for the Saints since then and has been a regular fixture in the first team for the last 10 seasons.

Ward-Prowse has scored two goals in 11 games for England since making his senior international debut back in 2017.

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