Folarin Balogun has been linked with a move to Championship promotion winners Fulham this summer.
As per a Daily Mail plus report, Fulham are interested in bringing Balogun on loan to Craven Cottage this summer and giving the young striker an opportunity to feature more regularly in the Premier League than he has done at Arsenal in the past.
With that being said, if the move went through and Arsenal allowed the 20-year-old to head to West London, this begs the question – where would he play?
Here, we’ve taken a look at the struggles Balogun would face getting into the XI up front, and another place he could fit in for the Cottagers.
How he’d fit in
Before discussing how Balogun may or may not fit into the Fulham system, it is first important to understand what that system has been.
For the most part this season, Marco Silva has opted for a 4-2-3-1, with one striker, two wingers and an attacking player in behind.
For the most part this season, that creative player has been Fabio Carvalho, flanked either side by Harry Wilson on the right, and Neeskens Kebano on the left.
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Of course, the record-breaking Aleksandar Mitrovic fills the central striker berth.
Balogun often plays as a striker and that is generally what is considered his best position. However, he would have a hard job displacing Aleksandar Mitrovic from the Fulham starting line up.
Obviously Balogun’s attributes are very different to those of Mitrovic, but it’s hard to see the Serbian being dropped after such an incredible campaign in the Championship.
One place Balogun could slot in, perhaps, is on the left wing.
Neeskens Kebano is currently out of contract at Craven Cottage this summer, and although the club have the option to extend for a further year, it may be that they do that and decide to move him on and cash in whilst they can.
Balogun has played on the left twice at Boro this campaign, and has experience playing there for Arsenal in the past, as well as in their youth set up.
If this deal gets done, perhaps then, that slot on the left is a realistic place Balogun can contribute from, with him unlikely to displace Aleksandar Mitrovic through the centre.
Of course, Marco Silva could always play a two up top formation in order to accommodate both Balogun and Mitrovic, however, he has rarely, if ever, deployed that system this season.