With recent reports linking Arsenal with a summer move for Montpelier defender Mapou Yanga-Mbiwa, we thought it only fitting that we give you the low-down and some info on the player.
So here are 10 things you should know about Mapou Yanga-Mbiwa.
1. Born in Bangui, Central African Republic, Yanga-Mbiwa joined Montpellier in 2005 as a 16-year-old. He made his senior debut for the French club on the 23rd of February against Bastia, a game which they lost 1-0.
2. He signed his first professional contract with Montpellier in 2007, agreeing a three-year deal until 2010. He was officially promoted to the senior side shortly after and was assigned the number 3 shirt.
3. In his first full season a first-team player, Yanga-Mbiwa managed to make an impressive 41 appearances, 31 in the league and seven in the domestic cup competitions.
4. The 22-year-old centre-back was part of the Montpellier side which gained promotion to Ligue 1 in 2009. During that summer he signed a two-year extension to his contract.
5. On May 12th 2010, Yanga-Mbiwa extended his contract by a year, meaning he is out of contract at the end of next season’s campaign.
6. This season has been Yanga-Mbiwa’s sixth season at Montpellier. To this date, the Bangui-born defender has made a total of 187 appearances for the French side, netting four goals in the process.
Here is a video of the young defender in action:
7. Although his favoured position is in the centre of defence, the Montpellier captain boasts versatility and can play anywhere across the back-line, as well as an emergency defensive midfielder. He is also known for his pace, superb passing range and reading of the game.
8. In December 2011, the 6 foot defender expressed his desire to one day play in the Premier League, claiming it would ‘suit his style of play’ and describing it as ‘incredible’.
10. According to France-based sports journalist Matt Spiro, ‘Arsene Wenger is very keen on Yanga-Mbiwa’, while Montpellier ‘won’t stand in their captain’s way’ and believes there is a ‘good chance of a transfer happening’.
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