Brighton ‘identify Bissouma replacement’ amid Arsenal links

Date published: Monday 5th July 2021 6:47 - James Holland

Enock Mwepu Brighton F365

Brighton could reportedly move for Red Bull Salzburg midfielder Enock Mwepu if Yves Bissouma leaves this summer.

Bissouma is a top target for Arsenal as they look to bolster their midfield options.

The Gunners are supposedly leading the £40million race to sign him, with Liverpool also interested.

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Such developments have forced Brighton to look for Bissouma’s successor.

According to The Athletic, they’ve lined up 23-year-old Mwepu as an ideal replacement.

He’s a tireless and intelligent player who, according to Total Football Analysis, is very good in possession.

Mwepu specialises in finding little pockets of space and playing in his attacking team-mates, helping Salzburg to move up the pitch quickly.

It’s thought he would suit Graham Potter’s attractive style of play at the Amex.

Due to Salzburg’s reputation for offloading players, Brighton believe they can sign Mwepu for a decent price.

They’re looking to emulate Leicester’s move for Patson Daka. He was a team-mate of Mwepu’s prior to his £22m move, which saw him sign a five-year deal at the King Power.

The pair remain team-mates on the international stage as they both represent Zambia.

Brighton have already done business with Salzburg. They allowed Brazilian full-back Bernardo to join the Austrian side permanently after a successful loan spell in 2020/21.

Signing Mwepu would continue the Seagulls’ effective scouting and transfer network.

In recent years, they’ve signed plenty of talented players from smaller clubs and turned them into regular Premier League performers.

Leandro Trossard and Adam Webster are two good examples, although Bissouma remains their most valuable asset.

Liverpool legend Jamie Carragher has already backed the Malian to leave for ‘top dollar’.

Speaking after Brighton’s 0-0 draw with Everton in April, Carragher said: “The biggest talking point from the game was Bissouma, who was the best player by a mile on the pitch.

“He really does look like a top-quality player. He just looked head and shoulders above everyone on the pitch.

“He’s been someone a lot of teams have talked about or looked at. I don’t think teams will be looking at him, I think they will be bidding for him at the end of the season.

“I know Brighton fans will be watching and saying, ‘why are you trying to sell one of our players?’

“He’s got a couple of years to go [on his contract]. You’re at that stage where you either sign a new contract or Brighton get top dollar for him, and I think you would get top dollar for him, that is the model.”

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