Boxing Day may have belonged to the punters but December 28th was definitely one for Arsenal fans with the Gunners closing the gap on their top-flight rivals, with all of the top five in the Premier League failing to pick up a maximum points.
And with January fast approaching it would appear that Arsene Wenger is looking to bolster the north London club’s ranks with the rumoured recruitment of St Etienne’s Loic Perrin.
An experienced Ligue 1 operator, the ASSE star remains something of an unknown quantity on English shores – here’s everything you need to know about him.
Versatility is Perrin’s middle name
The 29-year-old has forged a career in being able to play in a variety of positions. Though he is primarily deployed as a centre-back, the Frenchman is also capable of playing in defensive midfield or alternatively as a full-back – something that could prove highly useful to Wenger this season.
He’s been a one-club man until now
Moving away from St Etienne could be something of a gut-wrencher for the midfielder, given that he has spent much of his career at the club. Previously with FC St. Charles la Vigilante, Perrin first pitched up at St Etienne as a schoolboy in 1997 and has remained there ever since.
Perrin is a leader on the pitch
With Arsenal lacking a commanding presence in the middle of the pitch, Perrin could well oblige. The 29-year-old has been captain of St Etienne since the start of the 2007/08 season and played a key role in helping the club win the French League Cup in the 2012/13 campaign.
January an ideal time to bid for midfielder
Valued at around £6m, the French star would be something of an inexpensive gamble and is also able to represent Arsenal in the Champions League – something that could prove highly useful when they go up against his old Ligue 1 rivals AS Monaco in the last-16 of the competition.
Perrin is knocking on the door for Les Bleus
A move to Arsenal will appeal for any number of reasons, not least because it could see Perrin earn a call-up for France. Capped at under-19 and under-21 level, Perrin was included on Les Bleus’ reserve list for the World Cup and only just lost out to Eliaqium Mangala in the final squad.
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