He may not be what Arsenal fans were expecting to get during the summer transfer window, but few should dare to call Deportivo La Coruna striker Lucas Perez a poor player.
Ahead of his proposed move to the Premier League and amidst increased interest from Everton and Gunners, we take a look at this 27-year-old versatile forward, who could be labelled a trademark Arsene Wenger signing.
Lucas Perez Martinez is not a player that fits the world-class category.
Coming through the youth ranks of low-rank club Alaves, Montaneros and Ordenos, now a Deportivo La Coruna striker began his career playing for Atletico Madrid’s C team in 2007.
After two years at Vicente Calderon, the A Coruna-born footballer moved to Rayo Vallecano’s B team, which was at the time regarded as an upgrade to his previous stint with Los Colchoneros.
Hardworking Lucas Perez managed to work his way up the ranks and grab a chance to prove his worth at Rayo Vallecano first team, but seven league appearances and only one goal later the Spaniard was transferred to Karpaty Lviv.
A loan move to Ukraine giants Dynamo Kiev was supposed to be a stepping stone for Lucas Perez and a chance to get back under the radar of big European clubs, but it ended up shattering his confidence and self-belief.
A move to Greece proved to be a success despite an initial bit-part role he performed for PAOK Thessaloniki.
His 10 goals and 15 assists in all competitions in the first season with the Greek club caught the eye of Deportivo La Coruna, who offered this A Coruna native to return to his home town on loan.
A touch of destiny if you wish, but it took several years for this late bloomer to show his true value.
Thanks to hard work and relentless dedication he displayed through highs and lows during his career, Lucas Perez earned a permanent La Coruna transfer in 2015, a year he finished as the club’s top scorer.
Perez scored 17 La Liga goals in 36 games last season announcing himself at the European stage and catching the eye of several European clubs, with Everton leading the way.
Premier League Bound?
Perez’s versatility is one of his stronger suits that make him so valuable for Deportivo La Coruna.
Having already played as both left winger and centre forward, Lucas Perez can add depth and width into the play as a forward with an eye for good pass which is a trait ever so welcome in a striker.
Inside forward seems to be a position that suits him best and in this role he would be of most help to any club that would come calling. And there are two of those at the moment.
Premier League side Everton were believed to have already agreed personal terms with Deportivo La Coruna forward, but his move to Goodison has been placed on hold following late interest from Arsenal.
Arsene Wenger is under serious pressure from the fans and is looking to make some late additions to his squad, predominantly in attack. Alexandre Lacazette has been the main target for the London-based club, attempts to land Antoine Griezmann failed and Wenger is forced to look for alternative options.
Spanish media outlet Marca reports that Wenger is keen to swoop in and steal Everton target with a reported fee in excess of £17 million already on the table.
If Gunners are to justify or let’s say improve their 11/1 betting odds to lift the Premier League title and to challenge for honours a player such as Lucas Perez would surely be a great addition to the squad, despite the fact Arsenal fans are being suspicious over the player many of them have never heard before.
Hopefully this article will help them form a more positive opinion on Deportivo La Coruna gem of a player.